Her Light is Now Full
I received the message Sunday evening: Janet Straub passed peacefully from this life and was now safely home. Our dear friend and sister bravely fought cancer for two years, continually trusting her health to the Lord and seeking to fulfill his purposes in her suffering. As her health gradually declined, Janet steadily increased her confidence in Jesus. Even in her last days, her unique joy in God was evident. Hers was a light that would not be extinguished.
Exaggeration of virtue is a common grace when people die. But with Janet, statements that would normally be understood through that lens are actually true. She was a person who simply brightened the day of virtually every person she encountered. Chance encounters at the grocery store became life-giving, passing strangers became friends, medical personnel found themselves receiving care as much as giving it. Janet built a circle of friends everywhere she went.
I see her in my mind’s eye as she led us on a tour of Creo Chocolate to show us the sacred pathway to truly great chocolate. As countless guests could testify, her eyes sparkled as she delighted us with her charm, with her joy in the fine points of excellent chocolate and with her insights into things far more important than chocolate. (Yes, there are things more important than chocolate)
The center of Janet’s light was her Savior, Jesus Christ. This is another statement that for some might be more a statement of intention than reality, but it was as true of Janet as anyone you will ever meet. Her delight in Christ was evident when you talked with her. You could hear it when she offered comments at Life Group. I could see it in the way she listened when I preached. Her face made it clear that she was savoring the truth of God and finding her joy in him.
Janet’s passing leaves her home, our church and our world feeling less bright. And in a sense, it is. The light that comes from our memories is not as intense and beautiful as face to face. But her light has not gone out, it has simply gone home, and in the light of her Savior, her radiance is waxing brighter than we can imagine. “But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” (1 John 3:2)
There will be a Celebration of Life this Friday evening at 7:00pm at Evergreen. Due to current restrictions, attendance in person will be limited to family members and their guests. However, we will be streaming the service to Youtube and would welcome you to join us using this link. Together we will thank God for the gracious gift that Janet is.