A hard week
This past week has been a bit difficult for me. Back in April, we sent out a prayer letter with a request for healing for a dear brother and pastor in Autlan who had inoperable lung cancer. Over the past few months, Luis was waiting to die. He had pain in the right side of his chest where the cancer, but was controlling the pain with morphine. I spent at least couple of months I visited him weekly, just sitting with him and talking for over hour each time. The last time I visited him in his home, he said he had tremendous pain through out the night and finally went to sleep at 6 AM. Towards the end of our time together it was clear, he was exhausted, falling asleep in the middle of sentences. I prayed again for healing but for God's will to be done. I came home and told Jessie, it wouldn't be long. Sadly, I was right. Last week, they admitted Luis into a local hospital to make sure he was comfortable. With this type of cancer, he had little use of one of his lungs and partial use of the other. It was hard for him to breath. On Thursday last week, I went to visit him there at the hospital. He was awake but weak. I was able to pray with him and his family. I said I would be back the next day to offer any help I could. Friday morning, when I arrived, they had sedated him due to boughs of coughing fits. I sat and talked with his wife, just hoping to pass some of the time during these final moments. His breathing was labored while he was sleeping. I prayed again with his wife and one of his sons. I left late morning. By 3 PM he was gone. As a family we were celebrating Thanksgiving, but had to change our plans to attend the funeral. Friday evening the funeral started at 9 PM. Some of the extended family are Christians but about half are Catholics. But being that Luis's wife Soyla was able to decided before hand what she wanted for the service, there were three different services for the funeral. The first started at 9 PM on Friday evening. The second at 11 AM on Saturday. Then one final one at 4 PM, then everyone travel to the cemetery for his burial. At each service the gospel was preached. I was asked to pray at the end of the first service. I shared Philippians 1:21 " For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." Luis had gained eternity with Jesus. Before sharing this, I counted 12 pastors from Autlan and surrounding areas. He was a brother in Christ. I will miss him dearly. But as believers, we do not mourn the same as unbelievers. Our hope is in Jesus who is the author and perfecter of our faith. He is our treasure. We continue to pray for Luis's family members, those who are saved and those who are not that they would come to salvation. Please pray with us.