Ed Kosten liked to wear bow ties. : ) He blessed us with his amazing saxophone playing. He had a twinkle in his eye and a seemingly permanent smile. He was quick to laugh and tease, and always had an encouraging word to say. He loved the Lord. And I mean he truly loved the Lord with all his heart. He praised God with everything he had in him. He lived for Him, and loved to tell others about Him. Ed was one of those people. You know--the real deal. I didn't know him that well, but I KNEW him. He walked with the Lord.
And today, I sang at his funeral.
This past Sunday evening at church, the sermon was about Heaven. I was in the nursery, so I didn't get to hear it, but our pastor told us that after the service that night, Ed came up to him and proclaimed, "Sounds great! Let's go!" The next day he had a heart attack, and on Tuesday, that is exactly what he did. He went to Heaven to walk with Jesus in Person.
Ed left behind a wife, a daughter, and something like 5 married sons, and they are all grieving today, as well as our church family... but Ed is home. Doesn't that sound wonderful? Finally HOME....
Do you ever stop and really think about what happens after we leave this earth? Sometimes I look around me and pay attention to the people passing by. Everyone going about their business. We are all busy with something--running to Little League, helping the kids with homework, work issues, endless cleaning, honey-do lists and bill paying....busy, busy, dreadfully busy. But sometimes we need to stop--
and realize that this is not all there is. We are only on our path to eternity. What is that going to look like? How can we be sure of WHERE we will spend it? Can we really know?
Well, I have good news. We really can know! 1 John 5:13 says, "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; THAT YE MAY KNOW that ye have eternal life." We don't have to hope we have it. The Bible says we can know for sure. : )
You see, it all comes down to one thing, and that is our problem with sin. We all do it because we were born into it. We are all guilty of sin, which keeps us apart from God in His holiness. And according to the Bible in Romans 6:23, "the wages of sin (our payment for sin) is death." (Meaning eternal separation from God. Other passages explain it to be a place of torment eternally.) "But the gift of God is eternal life!" Did you catch that? The GIFT of God. It is a gift, not something we earn. Once you do something to earn a gift, it ceases to be one. It can't be a gift if you work for it! God loves us. He loves YOU. He made the ultimate sacrifice out of His great love, and that was sending His beloved Son, Jesus, to take the punishment for our sins as He died the death of crucifixion on a Roman cross. And then he defeated death three days later as He came to life again. He died for everyone's sins who ever lived, but each one of us has to decide if we will accept the gift of His salvation. or not.
I love John chapter 10. Here is some of it: v.9-11, 27-30--"I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep...My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them to me is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I and my Father are one." How awesome is that?? Do you want to go back and read it again? Go ahead. :)
Someday, those of us who know Him will spend forever with Him. I don't know exactly what Heaven will be like, but I do know it will be good! Imagine a place with no tears, pain or fear. 1 Corinthians 2:9 says, "But as it is written, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." So we have no earthly idea what is in store for us...but our friend Ed is experiencing it now. I am so happy for him!
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog! If you have any questions about all of this, or just want to know more, you can go here for a start. : )
How beautiful Heaven must be... See you soon, Ed...
Enjoy your weekend, friends!!