A Place Of Safety

The wicked person is thrown down by his own wrongdoing, but the righteous person has a place of safety in death. (Proverbs 14:32)

Read: 1Samuel 5:1-7:17, John 6:1-21, Psalm 106:13-31, Proverbs 14:32-33

Harlee

Relate: The above is the ISV. NIV says, “When calamity comes, the wicked are brought down, but even in death the righteous seek refuge in God.” The KJV, “The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.” The NLT which I usually use, “The wicked are crushed by disaster, but the godly have a refuge when they die.”

I called her Leperhead. Her mother called her Blueberry. Most of the rest of the world called her Harlee. At a little over two months old, I don’t think she much cared what you called her. She was a beautiful treasure. On Mother’s day four years ago I took Harley’s mom, my sister, along with her grandmother, my mom, and a couple of her aunts and uncles out to lunch at Ruby Tuesday’s. Afterwards I went home to sleep and Jalit took her daughter to my moms house to hang out with others in the family. Sometime late that night Harlee and Jalit headed home. Harlee was placed on her mother’s bed when Jalit started feeling sick. Her mom had eaten too much and got sick in the kitchen and in the bathroom. More than just eating too much, she was suffering from hyperglycemic ketoacidosis. That’s a fancy word for high blood sugar. Jalit sat down in a chair to rest for a bit. She never woke.

Harlee was laying there on the bed and at some point she would have begun crying because she was hungry. For some strange reason her cries were not answered like they normally are. Those cries grew in anger and desperation as her want grew to a need which became a crisis. Still unanswered her cries would have grown weaker as exhaustion and dehydration set in. Eventually, all alone in that house, Harlee also slipped into eternity.

React: This is not the end of the story. As sad and as hard as it is to talk or even think about, I know the hope… the confidence that I have in seeing Harlee again. I know this because I know what sin is and I know who God is. First of all, I know that what God says is true. He says that “the godly have a refuge when they die.” He says, “you have been fearfully and wonderfully made.” He says, “all things are made through Him [Jesus], without Him nothing is made that has been made.” What God makes is good. What God creates is holy… righteous. Harlee was made good.

I also know what sin is. It is missing the mark. It is rebellion against the will of God. It is a choice. It is not a birth defect. If sin (rather than the propensity for sin) was something we are all born with, then all babies would go to hell. If sin, rather than its propensity, was a fact of our birth then every time a young child dies, God has done evil. God does not and cannot do evil. Harlee has been sheltered from the vagaries of this world. She has been spared the turmoil of this life. She has found a place of safety in death that life did not… could not provide for her.

Respond: 

God, I thank You that Your Word is sure. I thank You that I can have the confidence that You are a good God. Please give peace to those of us who still endure the trouble of this world. Give rest to those of us whose hearts are in turmoil. Shelter us here until that glorious day when, upon death or Your return, we might enter that permanent place of refuge.

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32 thoughts on “A Place Of Safety

  1. This is incredibly sad. I admire you for not allowing this situation to draw you away from the LORD. I agree, Harlee is safe in the arms of our loving Abba Father. I can’t wait to get to Heaven and meet her!

  2. I understand grief, I’m so sorry for yours. Nearly a year ago now, my sister died and then my mum died 3 mths later, both suddenly, both from the same thing.
    I also understand just how much God keeps us through it and how His peace remains no matter what we go through. It’s supernatural, I praise Him that you have walked this with Him and can share this now to His glory.
    May the peace of Christ rest upon you at this time.
    God Bless .

  3. Dear BJ,
    I am sorry for your loss and I would like to thank you for your strength and your courage. It takes a great deal to share a story like this to others, especially strangers. Thank you for sharing your heart so that others may be given hope and brought closer to our God. I will say that you are one of my favorite bloggers.
    – Daddy’s Little Brat

  4. Heartbreaking. I am so sorry for your loss. Isn’t it a marvelous picture of how God made us that we suffer hurt and our hearts break? We hurt because He hurts when we’re in pain – we are created in His image. Nothing is wasted as every loss, every ache has the potential to draw us to Him. And to receive the joy He gives in knowing that you will see your sister and your niece again, because they are held safely and joyfully in His hands.

  5. Your testimony hasn’t left my heart all night and day..how can a person hear such a story and move on? As one part of the body suffers we all suffer indeed. Much love and prayers to you and your family.

  6. My heart is moved with compassion. As a mother, I cannot even begin to imagine the loss of a child–yet as you’ve pointed out; we truly have a sure hope in Jesus and our future home (heaven). May God give your family His shalom peace!

  7. Death is still painful for those left behind – even when they know their loved ones have gone to Heaven. I am sorry for your time with them being cut short, here on earth.

    Blessings ~ Wendy

  8. A very somber story. I feel for you, how hard it must have been. I know the pain of losing a child and even though it was more than 20 yrs ago, it still is fresh in my mind and I look forward to seeing him again in paradise! This was a beautiful tribute that you recorded here. God bless you.

  9. A soul stirring story. I am so sorry for your loss of two family members in such a sad and tragic way. Yet, how wonderful to know they are in the arms of Jesus now. I lost my son in an accident 1 1/2 years ago. It was knowing I would see him again and that he is with Jesus, that carried me through.

  10. I am so sorry, BJ, for the loss of your sister and niece. It is not the end of their story, as you said. … the godly have a refuge when they die. Thank you for this post. It encourages me too.

  11. Jesus take our tears (as sorrow weeps), He does not want us to grieve but understands we will, for the loss of our loved ones. I think that along the way, His mercy will bring to us tender memories of times shared together with those that have gone on to be with Him. He comforts us in these moments. He can bring a loved ones’ favorite things to mind and fill the gap in our heart and in this way…the sorrow turns to joy, as only Jesus can. He told the same to his disciples, to not be angry or grieve long, for although he must go to be with the Father…He will also come again! Death has no sting because He lives. Our loved one are alive! They are alive with Him! They are celebrating LIFE…eternal. What JOY!

    Bless you BJ, for sharing this tender story of your sister and little niece. A beautiful remembrance of a Mother’s love.
    ~Zoey

  12. Dear fellow blogger!

    I invite you to read my blog post about causality:

    “Everything happens for a reason”. “God has a plan for everything; He is in control”. These are the kind of things that many well-intentioned people tend to say to a friend or family member when they are suffering or grieving. But are they true? Are these sayings actually Biblical?”

    Read more: https://faithandencouragement.wordpress.com/2014/12/29/does-everything-happen-for-a-reason/

  13. There are some things, the hardest things, in fact that we will never understand and questioning God does not bring answers, but if we can accept them without bitterness them, maybe, just maybe like His servant Job we shall be counted His friend! Bless your patience!

  14. So sorry to read about this. But I am also glad that you and the family find refuge in a good God. Do you mind if I reblog this at some point?

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