By Ruth Benge

That morning in September was clear and a little crisp. It was a long and quiet two-hour drive. Feeling a little uncomfortable while driving in our dressy clothes didn’t help the situation either. We had finally arrived but no one was looking forward to this destination.

Matt, my husband, put the car in park and we sat in a painful silence. My mind began to drift as I thought this was a first for all of us, then my heart ached knowing that my children would be saying good-bye to my Dad – the first grandparent to die. Please God, give me Your words.

Please God, give me Your words.

And He did. I said, “I know these next couple of days are going to be very difficult and sad for all of us, but remember God’s promises – He will never leave us, so today look for HIS gifts – ways that He will comfort and hold us.”  We all agreed, stepped out of the van hugged, each other and walked into the funeral home.

After a long day we gathered at my Mom’s house for late night sandwiches before bed. I asked the kids what gift God had given them today.  Noah, our third-grader at the time said, “I know my gift from God today: my principal drove 2 hours to come to the funeral home to give me a hug.”

Next, our sixth-grader, Kaylee, took her turn saying, “My gift was when an older lady put her arm around me when I was looking at pictures of Papa on the poster board and I didn’t even know who she was.”

And finally, Leah shared, then an eighth-grader, “I heard a lot of funny stories about Papa – that he was wild and crazy when he was younger!!”

God is faithful and God is good.  Giving us all we need when we need it at His perfect time.