Grace Pryor 1932-2019

Friends, allow me to be very personal with this blog.

My mother died four days ago, and I preached her funeral yesterday. One verse has played over and over in my mind over the past few days.

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants” (Ps. 116:15).

For those not immersed in the Christian life, that statement may sound odd—even harsh. God enjoys it when we die??

We live in this moment, but God sees the bigger picture. And we would do well to remember that: This life is not all there is.

My mother knew that. Not long after my parents married in 1951, their next-door neighbors invited them to church. It was in that church that the gospel came alive for my mother, and she gave her life to Christ. My father was already a Christian, but he renewed his walk with Christ.

My parents were married for 46 years until my dad’s death in 1997. In all that time, I watched two people who loved Jesus immensely. A mechanical engineer and a homemaker whose faith came first. And it only grew. We kids would be watching something inane and forgettable on TV like Gomer Pyle, but my dad would be in the bedroom reading his Bible. And my mother? She would regularly speak and share her faith at ladies events called Christian Womens Club, something she did for over 30 years.

And all the while, my sisters and I were watching.

Their faith strengthened my own. I think I can speak for my two sisters as well and say we are who we are because they showed us what it looks like to walk with Christ.

So tomorrow we gather to remember my mother and honor the One she loved. At my father’s funeral 22 years ago, someone asked, “How can they be so happy?” If someone wondered that after my mother’s service , the answer would be the same.

We don’t grieve, because this life is not all there is. The love of God is great—far beyond what we can even imagine—and my mother’s death was precious to Him because the one He loved so much—Grace Pryor—is enjoying the glories of His presence without aches, pains, a bad heart, ill-fitting teeth, or the hassles of Houston traffic. She is enjoying all God has prepared for her, surrounded by friends and family. She is getting to meet and hug her own mother, who died just days after giving birth to her.

With all that she is enjoying in the presence of Christ, it’s easy to embrace this truth:

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants” (Ps. 116:15).