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Emmanuel and Anna Belle

"Mawmaw loves you." Is all that filled my mind, over and over again after I had gotten word that she had passed away. It was like God knew what my soul needed to hear in order to be soothed.

My grandmother, Anna Belle Owens, passed away Friday, December 18th at 9:05pm. For the past year she had been living in a nursing home. And like so many others around the world, because of Covid, visiting her these past few months had become very difficult.

The news came as a shock. She hadn't been sick, and had been recovering well from her recent hip replacement. My mind wasn't willing to understand it at first. She wasn't even that old, just 80 years young.

How does one just stop living?

The last time I had gotten to visit her was nearly 4 months ago, outside her nursing home glass door, on the day of my gender reveal for my first born.

Like most people, I suppose, I had been feeling stripped of special time with her because of the pandemic. Talking to someone through a thick glass door, barely hearing each other, and not being able to touch one another....isn't quite the quality time I would prefer.

All those precious moments-gone.

At first I wanted to feel sorrowful, imagining her being alone in the nursing home as she took her last breath. But strangely....I couldn't. In fact, the more I thought about that, the more

confident I became that she wasn't alone.

Yet another way of God knowing how to soothe my soul.

While I have no proof that a nurse was sitting with her, I just know in my bones that whether it was a physical nurse, or Emmanuel himself-either way, my beloved grandmother was not alone.

With this thought, peace and joy began to fill my heart for my grandmother.

Satan often likes us to feel overwhelmed with being alone-believing that no one else is there experiencing our same fears, wrestling with similar sorrows. For whatever reason, with our humble species, everything is always made worse when a person has to face something alone. And so Satan likes to keep our minds focused on that.

But the truth of Christmas, the best gift to all who believe, is the power of Emmanuel, which means God with us. Because of Christmas, no believer is ever alone. Not in the secret places, not in darkness, not on the mountain tops, and certainly not in death.

Although I miss her, and I had hoped that she would have been able to hold my first born. I rejoice in knowing that she is reunited with her mother and my my pawpaw-most likely dancing-oh how she loved to dance. And I am SO HAPPY for her.

With the closing of 2020 upon us, let us hold tight to the promise and truth of Christmas- Emmanuel- that for the believer, God is always right here with us.


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