Today I spent some time on the phone with my very best friend, CJ, listening to her and crying with her as she talked about the last 3 days since I've seen her. I haven't seen her since Saturday night at 11:00 pm when we were both at the hospital with her boss of 20 years - an elderly gentleman named Gordon who was 77 years old. Gordon & CJ have a very special relationship. Up until the last couple of weeks Gordon was not saved and CJ, being the strong Christian woman she has always been, has spent the last 20 years praying for Gordon and loving him and being there for him through all of his trials and tribulations when he had nobody else to turn to. Gordon, in turn was like a father to CJ...and a year ago when she and her husband decided to adopt a baby boy, Gordon's heart began softening and his crusty bitter exterior began to melt the more he hung around with his "adopted" grandchild.
I had the privilege this last year of working with Gordon on several occasions and he loved to talk and tell me stories from his past. He was such an interesting man. He began having some health problems about six months ago and he has been in and out of the hospital constantly. CJ has been there for him and had taken over the role of his caregiver.
When we left Saturday night they had just given him a sleeping pill for the night so he could get some rest. The hospital called CJ early Sunday morning and told her he wasn't going to be around much longer and she needed to come back up there. He kept hanging on until she finally gave him permission to "leave" around 5:00 pm Sunday afternoon...for the last year she has called him every morning as soon as she wakes up and he answers with "Yes, I'm still alive." She said the last two mornings have hit her hard when she goes to get the phone to call him and she realizes he is gone. She has a peace about one thing though....my sweet friend prayed her cranky old boss into heaven - he DID accept Jesus Christ as his personal savior a few weeks ago so she knows she'll be seeing him again one day.