From Indignity to Glory
William Campbell Little
3/23/30 – 1/1/08
Today would have been my father’s 86th birthday. My Daddy was many things: a husband, a father, a Papaw, an Auburn tiger, a lover of Walker: Texas Ranger, a scientist, a pilot, a champion for those with disabilities, a lover of biscuits and gravy, a carpenter, and a deeply devout man of God.
Almost 20 years ago, my Dad began to lose his hearing. And then his balance. And then his vision. He was diagnosed with an insidious and progressive disease that ultimately left him deaf, blind, and wheelchair-bound. The dementia and the unmanageable headaches were incredibly debilitating. My mother cared for him at home until the last week of his life. He passed away quietly in the hospital on January 1, 2008.
What must it have been like to be my Daddy in those last few years? What must it have felt like to be in that ugly, frightening, and humiliating place of confusion and incapacitation?
When my Daddy died, I remember feeling such a sense of relief and joy. After all the years of downhill decline, he was no longer hurting or confused. He was no longer trapped in his silent, dark world. It brings tears to my eyes and a smile to my face to think of my Dad singing boldly and slightly off key in the Heavenly choir. I can only imagine his profound delight at being able to see, and hear, and touch his Savior.
Here in the midst of Holy Week, we are asked to journey through Jesus’ last days on Earth. What must it have felt like to be Jesus in those last days? What must it have felt like to be nailed to a cross? We are asked to witness the ugly, frightening, and humiliating death of our Savior during Holy Week.
Ah, but then we get to experience the relief and joy of the empty tomb! My sweet Daddy and all of us get to live a glorious eternal life because the Son of God died for us. Thanks Be To God!