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Linda Boylan Funeral

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On behalf of the family, I’d like to welcome you as we remember and celebrate the life of Linda Louise Boylan.
Life can be so busy. Often we go on like there will always be more time, but suddenly we realize time is fleeting. These days force us to hit the pause button for a bit. Everything else will just have to wait. Today we’ll remember a beautify lady; a sister, a mom, a grandma, a loved-one, a friend, and so much more.Prayer
Prayer

Eulogy

Linda Louise Boylan, 74, passed away April 2, 2018. She was a homemaker. She was preceded in death by her husband, Mike R. Boylan and son, Robert Burns. She is survived by her brother, John (Jean) McGrigg, her children, Rick (Elizabeth) Burns, Kelly L. Burns and Michelle (Michael) Moore; grandchildren, Michael, Robert and Abigail Burns, Gus and Max Moore.
It’s customary to read the obituary, but how can you describe a life in a few lines? How can you capture the love and joy and sacrifice of decades of a million choices. A short obituary simply won’t due.
No it’s the words of family members that are shared and memories revisited that tell the story.

Abby (granddaughter)

Grandma, you were the loveliest person I’ve ever known with the biggest heart. You had the most beautiful, dainty soul and you touched the heart of every single person you met. I remember when you first moved into the nursing home, all of the nurses would tell me I had the sweetest, most adorable grandmother and Lord, did I know it. I will always remember that as a little girl I looked up to how perfect you and grandpa were for each other. The love between you two stretched far and wide and swelled to encompass everyone in the room with you. When grandpa passed, he took half of your heart with him and even though none of us wanted to see you go, I’m forever thankful to God that your heart is once again filled with joy and unconditional love and that you get to spend forever with grandpa. You were and always will be one of my greatest role models in life, always showing me how to forgive and love those who needed it most. I’m so happy my parents gave me your middle name so I can have you with me forever. Love you so much grandma. You were as darling as they come.

Max

“I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me. 
I studied this verse last night at bible study, the chapter continues to talk about how this is going to be the hardest sermon to give to his kids. He means there will be believers who instantly buy in and trust the process, but there will be those that don’t believe and need to have more truth to the word, than the letters on the page. That was my grandma, never did she hear something and not want it said again, she wanted to understand truth in everyone, because she cared. 
When I first planned out what I was going to come up here and say about my best friend going to her final resting place, I wrote out a story that I keep close to my heart, but her and I know that story and it made us both happy, so I thought I ought to leave it at that. So, I thought what’s the purpose of coming up and talking and I had convinced myself not to. But then I learned something that furthered my faith last night, the crazy thing is, it would have furthered her faith too, because for the last two years my grandma was searching for the truth in God. She would ask me questions constantly and I would preach to her, she gave me the drive to become closer to God, only to bring her closer.  
The verses I read to you earlier were the story of the vine. This vine is an analogy from God of life. This vine has branches, those branches are believers, what do vines grow? They grow grapes, these grapes are the believers' hearts willing to give to those who aren't sure if they want to believe.  
This Sunday, for the first time I realized grandma gets it, she went up for 1 on 1 prayer from a prayer partner at church and I think, I'm sorry, no, I know she finally felt confident in Christ as her Father. 
Here's the great thing about God, it doesn’t matter how long you have accepted Christ as your Father, it is when, and when you do you are lifted and freed from previous sin. He waits for all his children to accept him and he was waiting on my grandma. 
I will leave you with this: God has taken another one of his children into heaven and for me that is all I need to know and it's what makes me be able to stand up here and smile. 
Grandma I love you and you gave me a special friendship I will cherish forever. Tell Grandpa, “We have them right where we want them.”

Can Only Imagine

No from the perspective of some of her kids

Rick

Insert or
Always saw mom as a fighter
Even in divorce, they always did the right thing
Felt as though the task was accomplished.

Michelle

he word, than the letters on the page. That was my grandma, never did she hear something and not want it said again, she wanted to understand truth in everyone, because she cared. 
I studied this verse last night at bible study, the chapter continues to talk about how this is going to be the hardest sermon to give to his kids. He means there will be believers who instantly buy in and trust the process, but there will be those that don’t believe and need to have more truth to the word, than the letters on the page. That was my grandma, never did she hear something and not want it said again, she wanted to understand truth in everyone, because she cared. 
When I first planned out what I was going to come up here and say about my best friend going to her final resting place, I wrote out a story that I keep close to my heart, but her and I know that story and it made us both happy, so I thought I ought to leave it at that. So, I thought what’s the purpose of coming up and talking and I had convinced myself not to. But then I learned something that furthered my faith last night, the crazy thing is, it would have furthered her faith too, because for the last two years my grandma was searching for the truth in God. She would ask me questions constantly and I would preach to her, she gave me the drive to become closer to God, only to bring her closer.  
I would like to tell you about my mom and what ended up being a story of answered prayer.
The verses I read to you earlier were the story of the vine. This vine is an analogy from God of life. This vine has branches, those branches are believers, what do vines grow? They grow grapes, these grapes are the believers' hearts willing to give to those who aren't sure if they want to believe.  
I didn’t know it when it was happening, but as I have been reflecting on the events leading up to Monday morning, I can now see the story unfold. I got the call that Mom was found to be unresponsive and Emergency Medical Services were there. I rushed to her to find that nothing could be done to revive her.
This Sunday, for the first time I realized grandma gets it, she went up for 1 on 1 prayer from a prayer partner at church and I think, I'm sorry, no, I know she finally felt confident in Christ as her Father. 
Since the reality of her passing, I have looked back over the days leading up to it and have realized that my prayers have been answered.
My prayers were that Mom would find comfort and peace, in particular, that she would receive that comfort from her relationship with Jesus.
Here's the great thing about God, it doesn’t matter how long you have accepted Christ as your Father, it is when, and when you do you are lifted and freed from previous sin. He waits for all his children to accept him and he was waiting on my grandma. 
Like many relationships, Mom’s relationship with Jesus had ups and downs throughout her 74 years. Kelly and Rick have memories of going to church with Mom every Sunday. I have memories of waking up to hearing her sing the hymn Onward Christian Soldiers .... She believed, but had questions and things she didn’t understand, because of the losses she suffered. She lost her mom in her early 20s and Robbie when he was just 9 years old. That loss cut deep and ultimately greatly defined who she was. She once told me that her Dad had told her that she had to be a soldier and be strong bc she had Rick, Kelly, and I to take care of, so she moved forward. She did not completely turn away from the Lord after Robbie died, but I know she had questions..Despite that, she made sure I went to VBS and her, Mike, and I went to church, and when she couldn’t I went with Tracey and her grandparents. So I know it was important to her, even if at the time she couldn’t turn to God for comfort for herself. As I was growing up, she had her moments of deep sadness and depression, but as a child, I remember her more, as energetic and happy. I remember times during the summers when she would come in and fling the blinds open and say get up, we are going to King’s Island, or maybe Turkey Run. I remember waking up to the sound of her singing! Oftentimes she would mess up the words and just make them up as she went along! She was my safe place as a child and always there for me to come to and lay my head in her lap and cry when I needed to. She always wanted to make people happy and she would do that by giving them gifts and tending to them. To her that was love, so she enjoyed receiving gifts and being tended to in return. She sought comfort in the people around her, she especially found it in Mike, with Kelly and their travels and antiquing, in Rick and Beth, and Mike and I. She got great joy from her grandchildren Michael, Robert, Gus, Abby, and Max. She loved talking with and spending time with her brother, John and sister-in-law, Jeanne.
I will leave you with this: God has taken another one of his children into heaven and for me that is all I need to know and it's what makes me be able to stand up here and smile. 
Grandma I love you and you gave me a special friendship I will cherish forever. Tell Grandpa, “We have them right where we want them.”
In recent years, her and Mike would go to church with Mike, Gus, Max, and I, but when her brother, Sonny, was killed in a car accident and Mike passed away 2 years ago, all that pain of loss came back to her full force. At that time, she lost her biggest source of comfort and support. At the same time, she experienced a decline in her health and through this, was forced into a whole new situation in life. She struggled in grief and I tried to help her by encouraging her to turn to Jesus for comfort and she tried. In the first few months we saw a grief counselor, went to Grief Share, a support group at church, but she ultimately wasn’t ready. She went to church with us for a while, then she would say she couldn’t go because the songs and words made her sad and miss Mike even more, so I backed off and let her know that it was an open invitation anytime she wanted to come with us. She read devotions from time to time and she watched Joyce Meyers a few times, but still struggled, while at the same time she continued to seek answers about God and Heaven. She would ask me questions, she would ask Max, she would ask Mike, she would ask, my friend, Chris and we would do our best to share our understanding.
Finally, just a few weeks ago, she said she wanted to go to church with us again and she did. One of the weeks we went to see the movie I Can Only Imagine, instead of going to Church. Her and I sat together and, at times, held hands during the movie and as each song in the movie would play, she would say, is this the song and I would say, no, not yet Mom, then the next song would play and she would say is this it? and I would say no, not yet, until finally it was the song and it seemed to make an impression on her. After the movie we headed to Grays to eat and on the way she asked us to play that song and others by Mercy Me. She enjoyed listening and we talked about the meaning of the song and answered some more of her questions about what we believed about Heaven and what will happen there.
The evidence that my prayers were answered can be found in those last 3 weeks and this past Sunday on Easter, which ended up being her last day here with us.
Despite having a rough couple of nights and a struggle with transferring to the car, she made it to church. She had a very good time at church. Mike said he looked over at her and she looked like she was glowing. She was singing the worship songs, she had a wide smile on her face during the baptisms and would clap after each one, even though, that, with her limited range of motion, was a challenge. She even looked at me and laughed and said, “In the time it takes me to get my hands together, everyone is done clapping.” While we sang, I reached down and held her hand and she held it up against her cheek and kissed it. At the end of the service, Max went up to the front for prayer and Mom started to follow in the wheelchair and Mike said, “Where ya goin?” She pointed towards Max and the prayer partner and said, “I want go up there,” and Mike pushed her the rest of the way. She waited on Max to finish, then talked with the prayer partner and prayed with her.
Max tells me, on the way back to our house, she asked him to play, I Can Only Imagine and enjoyed it and hummed along to the music he played on the way home. They stopped at a gas station to grab a drink and Mom asked that they get her a lottery ticket and Mike surprised her with a bunch of scratch offs and a few lottery tickets. Mom loved to play the lottery and bet the horses! She was always dreaming of the big win and most of her plans included buying something for somebody else with the money she would win.
They got home and Mom sat at the kitchen table and Kailey helped Mom scratch off the lottery tickets...She won $13 dollars. We ate brunch together, talked and enjoyed each other’s company. In the last two years, there were many days that were not like that, some days were filled with stress and impatience, her with me and me with her.
But not last Sunday, on that day, I now realize my prayers were answered, she seemed to have found that peace and contentment in the Lord that I had prayed for.
On Monday morning she got up, headed to the table for breakfast and the Lord took her home. He took her in a way that was quick and did not involve anymore suffering. For that, I am forever grateful.
I choose to believe that she is in Heaven and now knows what we can only imagine...the immeasurable happiness of being with Jesus and, for Mom, the joy of seeing Mike and her son that she has missed for 43 years! I am overcome when I try to imagine the immense joy she must have experienced.
And even though, I hated to see her unhappy, I am thankful for the last two years and the times I got to sit with the Mom I remembered from my younger years and feel that I was in that safe place again and have her offer her advice on whatever might have been concerning me at the time.
I am happy to be a believer, because it means I am not saying goodbye to my Mom today, but see you later.
Thank you Mom.

Song: Cry Out to Jesus

What else can you say about someone who was so full of joy. Her life revolved around her three great loves(in no particular order): First, her kids (she had something special with each one. With Kelly, she loved to travel) Regardless, she was always the cheerleader, and she always believed the best. Second; her husband Mike whom she love to share her life. Third, her grandkids, and oh, how she loved to spoil them!
Her brother John says, “She was a good sister to me. She was always fun to be with. When we came down and visited, We would go out to dinner with her and Mike and we joked and laughed a lot, so much so, my side usually hurt from laughing!”
Today is a day for sharing memories and stories. We have to be honest though, days like today hurt. Today, we’ll say goodbye for a while. For those who know Jesus as Lord, these days still hurt, but they aren’t without hope. The Apostle Paul wrote, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? ...But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Even in (I’d say especially in) death, there is reason for hope…even in the pain.
Today is a day for sharing memories and stories. We have to be honest though, days like today hurt. Today, we’ll say goodbye for a while. For those who know Jesus as Lord, these days still hurt, but they aren’t without hope. The Apostle Paul wrote, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting? ...But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Even in (I’d say especially in) death, there is reason for hope…even in the pain.
John 14:1–6 CSB
1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also. 4 You know the way to where I am going.” 5 “Lord,” Thomas said, “we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
For the next few minutes I’d like to read you a passage of Scripture. Jesus told this to his disciples as his death was drawing near. It comes from the book of John. He gives help for the hurting heart.
John 14:1–6 CSB
1 “Don’t let your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. 3 If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also. 4 You know the way to where I am going.” 5 “Lord,” Thomas said, “we don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Jesus gives help for the hurting heart.
Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Jesus isn’t giving them a hard time for being sad. Just a few chapters earlier, Jesus himself wept at a funeral for a dear friend. It’s not a correction. He won’t correct us here today for grieving. No, its the loving hand of a friend that gently reminds us; don’t let this overwhelm you.
Jesus had just told the disciples that it was time for him to leave. He had repeatedly said that he would die. Now the time had come. It’s never easy to say goodbye. They didn’t understand what he was doing. Sometimes situations like this reveal all those unanswered questions that we have as well. Jesus simply says, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled.”
It’s normal to be focused on the moment. It’s normal to hurt in moments like these as we say goodbye. So often folks think the pain will never go away. That’s why Jesus’ words are so important to us today.
Jesus recognized his disciples were in pain so with great compassion and wisdom he points them to something a bit further down the road to something much greater, lasting, and eternal—he points them to a time when they will be with him forever in his Father’s house.
He says, Believe in God. Not just who you might imagine God to be, but the God of the Bible. Scripture tells us he is our refuge and strength and an ever-present help in time of need. He is power and majesty, goodness, wisdom, mercy, and love. This God loves Linda and you and says, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled.”
Believe in Jesus. Believe in the true Jesus, the one who left the glories of heaven to live a life in our place. He chose right when we chose wrong. He lived a life that we refused to live just so he could pay the price for our freedom.
Assurance for those who believe:
Jesus says, My father's house is huge and there's a bunch of rooms. There's a room for you. Honestly, I have a hard time picturing this. I try to, but I think that misses the point. The point Jesus is making is this: we can have peace in the struggles and hurt of today because of the future promise. There will be a time when when we’ll have a new home and the word “goodbye” won’t be spoken anymore. There will a time when sickness is no more. We'll be with loved-ones and we'll be with God himself.
Jesus said he was going to prepare this place for his disciples and by implication, all who would believe in him. It’s not a fairy tale. It’s a place of peace and joy. It’s a place without cancer or sickness or death.
Jesus will see us home safely. He said, “I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” Linda is with him today.
So we’ll be thankful for time with Lina and we’ll keep looking forward.
Don’t let your hearts be troubled
Believe in God
Believe in his Son, Jesus.
Trust Christ’s love, purpose, and promise. He takes care of those whom he brings to his Father’s house. The way to the Father is found in Christ alone, who says, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father but through Me.”

Prayer

Song: Home

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