Aunt Marjorie died Sunday after battling health problems for years. Uncle Lin did everything he possibly could to help her and when he became ill, their kids were there to care for both of them. What a beautiful family and what a beautiful expression of God's love!
Aunt Marjorie wasn't really my aunt. She was married to Uncle Lin who wasn't really my uncle. Lin Cravens was Dad's cousin. They were as close as brothers. He was always Uncle Lin to me. Uncle Lin's dad, my great-uncle Willy Cravens was a Baptist preacher. Lin was destined to become a Baptist preacher as well.
As a young man Uncle Lin was serving as the pastor at Mom's church, New Home General Baptist Church in Poplar Bluff, MO. Mom was a single young lady who had finished high school and was working at the local shoe factory. When Uncle Lin's cousin Don came home on leave from the Navy, he said you have to meet this sweet young lady at my church.
I've heard a couple of different renditions of this story, but basically, Lin introduced Mom & Dad to each other and a few short weeks later Lin married them at New Home General Baptist Church. How romantic!
Uncle Lin was fortunate enough to find Aunt Marjorie. I don't know their story but I do know they fell in love and were married for many, many years. Uncle Lin adored Aunt Marjorie! And with good reason. Aunt Marjorie was a delightful woman. Intelligent, artistic, quiet, humble. Aunt Marjorie lost her eye sight several years ago. Uncle Lin served as her eyes. Even with poor eyesight she still created beautiful pottery. At one of our family reunions several years ago I won the bid on an exquisite pitcher that Aunt Marjorie made. I cherish that pitcher!
Uncle Lin is a jokester. He always has magic tricks, jokes, etc. His jokes and tricks always have a point. He is very good at teaching kids. He grabs their attention and then lets them know that God loves them.
Most people wouldn't think that someone like that would be good at prison ministry, especially not in one of the roughest prison systems in the country, Orange County California. Uncle Lin is an exceptional man. He flourished in prison ministry because he loved people. He didn't just say he loved people. He truly, deeply loved people, even people in prison. He wanted to help them. He saw them through Jesus' eyes long before that song was made popular. Aunt Marjorie supported him and was proud of him for his work among the toughest of the tough in this gang run prison. Together, they had an awesome ministry!
I love you, Aunt Marjorie! I know you're in heaven with the rest of our family with your eyesight and health restored! Hallelujah!
Revelation 14:12-13 (The Message)
Meanwhile, the saints stand passionately patient, keeping God's commands, staying faithful to Jesus. I heard a voice out of Heaven, "Write this: Blessed are those who die in the Master from now on; how blessed to die that way!"
says the Spirit, "and blessed rest from their hard, hard work. None of
what they've done is wasted; God blesses them for it all in the end."