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The Powerful Funeral

Calin Ciuciui, Sharon and Dale

I just attended a 4 hour funeral in Romania this morning.  Well, it felt like it—it was a live webcast.  My dear friend Calin’s dad, Theo Ciuciui died unexpectly three days ago from a heart attack. You met Calin back in May (http://wp.me/p2mA2B-bh).

First, let me say, I’ve never been to a 4 hour funeral service.  And second, I’ve never been to one as powerful as this one. His 4 children led worship passionately and ministered the most amazing faith message I’ve ever heard. I watched in tears. Their dad was a spiritual hero to them and thousands around the world. He was a pastor, missionary, visionary and amazing father and husband.

Even at the hardest junctures of our life, we are called to deny self, pick up the cross and follow Jesus. This family lived this on the hardest day of their life.  They denied themselves and ministered sacrificially, so that others would hear the gospel, so that faith would be increased, so that weaker people would see the abundant life even in death, and so that God would be glorified.

It is easy to be a Christian when our circumstances are good.  The true test of what you and I are made of comes in our darkest hours of trial. Will we be able to deny our own desires, pick up the cross and follow Him outrageously?

The path is narrow and steep, and hours of trial sometimes lurk around every bend.  But it is in the darkest hours refined by fire that we are transformed into greater degrees of His glory.

I long to witness when the Son of Man comes in the glory of His Father with His angels and rewards this family for how they’ve denied themselves, picked up their cross and followed Him outrageously. I am overwhelmed by how they live and want to live more sacrificially as well.

Would you pray for the Ciuciui’s? Even though they are strong, it will be hard.

 

2 Corinthians 3:18 KJV
But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

 

Matthew 16:24-27NKJV

24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 25 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works.

 

Comments

  1. What a great testimony…. so encouraging to live a life of love and sacrifice… Glory to God!

    Father, I pray that you will give comfort and embrace this family in the time of missing their beloved dad…. and joy knowing fully well that he is in Your arms now….

  2. So sorry for your friend’s loss. It’s so difficult to lose a loved one. Praying for your friend Calin and his family, that the God of all comfort comes and comforts them. Thank nyou for sharing.

  3. I have attended some incredible funeral services as well. I remember one I went to, the dad of a very new friend. I had never met her dad, but by the tributes and memories shared, I missed meeting a wonderful man who had truly lived. He wasn’t afraid to follow the dreams God had placed in his heart, and yet he didn’t take foolish risks. He enjoyed life to the full. In many ways he went from living to living. How sad, that often times those of us still living aren’t embracing life to the full….we are missing out on following Him outrageously. (LOVED THAT!)

    Lord, thank You for this precious family who sacrificially ministered and gave praise to Your Name. Father, they must still be experiencing the ache of loss. Lord, be the Comforter they need and the Counselor who will continue to remind them that they will all meet again. Hold them close when the reality of temporary separation brings tears and fill their hearts and minds with treasured memories, as well as hope for what is yet to come. Be Husband, Father, Shepherd and Friend. Lord, continue to give them the quiet grace and strength to minister in the midst of their pain from the depth of Your provision. Love them Lord…love them close and hold them tight. Thank You for the wonderful testimony of this precious family. Encourage many to live sold-out for You because of the life of this saint. “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints”, Psalm 116:15.

    Sadly, yesterday I lived more “outraged” than “outrageously”. HUGE difference!! I allowed a little misunderstanding to fester like a “pea” under a pile of mattresses, but thankfully the Lord called me to forgiveness and restoration quickly. Life here on earth is short, and a funeral reminds us that death is inescapable. Longing to live each day in resurrection power. May God raise any dead thing in me to new life.

    Thanks for sharing this testimony Sharon. Lifting your friends in prayer,
    Blessings,
    Joy

    • Joy,
      Thank you for praying for this family.

      You could write an article or devotion on living outrageously rather than outraged. I love that concept. Many people live much of their life outraged and don’t know there’s a different way.

      I love you dearly.

      Sharon

      • Thanks for that encouragement Sharon. I do feel that as I step back from “social media”, the Lord is calling me back to writing. I felt a “jolt” in my spirit when I wrote that thought above…maybe it was His Spirit prompting me to develop that further. Thank you for that suggestion. Confirmation? *smile*

        I love you dearly too,
        Joy

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