So I went to a funeral today, which is the closest thing to a ‘reunion’ we have in my family. My ‘Aunt’ Flo died this last weekend. Flo was my mom’s brother Bill’s first wife, and the mother of 5 of my first cousins.
One of her sons, my cousin Brian, is a United Methodist pastor, and he did a great job with the service. What struck me was how honest it was – starting with Brian, who officiated, and going though other family members as well – this was not a ‘sugar-coated’ service where everyone tries to find something superficial but nice to say. Flo was a woman of opinions, and was blunt about them. She was funny; she was curt. She was SO MUCH of an Elvis fan, there was a portrait of Elvis in the back of the room – I am not making this up. (And no, it wasn’t velvet.)
She was loving and quirky and honest and loyal and storied – just like many of us.
She came to know the Lord late in life, but everyone seemed to acknowledge that most of her life was lived ‘her way’. And the cool thing was, everyone sort of got that. There’s us, and then there’s grace. There’s some sort of joke about ‘Graceland’ to be made here, but I’m not gonna fight for it. Point, is, because of grace, it was everything a funeral should be – a celebration of life and an acknowledgement of loss. A good laugh, and a good cry.