I got to go to my first funeral. I didn’t know quite what to expect. I’ve only been to a handful of funerals in America, so that is all I had to compare it to. We hiked a good ways (I left the kids at home with BJ) and got to the location. There were people sleeping because they had been mourning for several days now. Others were just sitting around. Kathy and I were invited into the house where the body was kept.
We went into this traditional round house with a fire pit in the middle, and a lot of women were sitting in the house. The family (wife and 3 kids) of this man were sitting around his coffin. We sat shook hands with everyone, and they insisted that we sit right by the coffin. It was silent, until one of the daughters started wailing. This moved everyone else to wail too. Kathy and I just sat there silent. I actually started to cry, because these people have been mourning this man’s death for 4 days now. It was really sad to me to see how they have no hope.
They were asking their papa, why did you have to leave? The wife and kids are all believers, but the husband did not come and was not known to be a believer. So this death was really hard for the wife. The others in the house were not believers, and the lack of hope was really evident. As I cried, I prayed for several people around me. I prayed for the woman to my left who had tears running down her face. I prayed for the 3 men who walked in towards the end and bawled at the coffin. I prayed, “Lord, let them know you intimately. Give them a hope that death is okay if they are trusting in you. Reveal yourself to these men.” I was not expecting to already face a funeral in my short 48 hours of being here, but it refocuses me on why we are here…to give them a hope and a future.