Moving from the ICU to inpatient hospice care, the atmosphere in her room was peaceful. No more whirling sounds of the ventilator or beeps from monitors. The only sound was the cadence of Jasmine’s weak breaths as she transitioned to breathe on her own. God sustained her long enough to enable our adult children, Rhapsody and Seizen, to visit their mom and express their final words of love and appreciation to her. We trust that God opened her ears to receive their sentiments from the deepest parts of their hearts. Together, we thanked God for the gift of compassion and unselfish love that she was to us as a wife, mother, and grandmother. Those poignant moments will forever be embedded in our memories. It was the last time that we met together as a family of four.

Jasmine had lived a life that the little girl from the sleepy town of Hilo, Hawaii never dreamed of. She never anticipated that she would call Texas her home for nearly half her life and raise two “native Texans” while maintaining her cultural roots. She touched many, many lives with her passionate love for God and love from God, more than she would ever know this side of heaven. At 70, despite the richness of family, friends, and her abiding faith in Christ, if God gave her a choice she would say as the Apostle Paul, “I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far.” (Philippians 1:23b).

Stop and Consider: Psalm 144:4 says, “Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow.” We often say, “This life is just temporary,” or something to that effect and we say it so flippantly. Losing Jasmine unexpectedly brought home the reality that, yes, this life is just temporal. 70 years or even 100 years may seem insignificant when compared to eternity, but the point of it being “like a breath” is not about the length of time but the kind of investment with the time that God grants us. What are you doing with your life that will make a difference for eternity?

(Part 14: She Heard Jesus Say, “Come”)