The funeral of Charles Watt took place this week. Charles was a much loved member here at Ebenezer though in recent years, ill health had prevented him from attending regularly. Many of our newer members will not have had the privilege of hearing him read beautifully in his rich accent from the 1611 Authorized Version during our open times. His contributions were always appreciated and thoughtful.
Charles had a real faith in God and one of his favourite phrases was “I’m going to a better place.” This wasn’t “pie in the sky” or wishful thinking it was a response to the words of Jesus himself (John 14:1-3). Christian faith can never be a flight from reason or a leap in the dark, it is placing trust in the promises of God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Among the things that Charles had kept was a small piece of paper containing some verses from Isaiah and the verse of poetry below. The poetry was an extract from the letters of Samuel Rutherford 1600-1661 some of which was later adapted to form the lovely hymn “The Sands of Time are Sinking”. Sadly this verse doesn’t seem to have made it into the version sung most often today, but it reveals where Charles’ hope was anchored. The promise of Jesus is eternal life for all those whose trust is in him.
I’ve wrestled on towards Heaven, against storm and wind and tide,
Now, like a weary traveller that leaneth on his guide,
Amid the shades of evening, while sinks life’s lingering sand,
I hail the glory dawning from Immanuel’s land.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” (John 14:1-3)