Thursday, November 1, 2007

A letter from Phil Brown, who made Christy's casket

(written Sept. 30/07)
Christy, I’m sorry I missed your call on my birthday, but I’m so thankful that you were able to take my call in the hospital after your fall. Nancy and I pray for you, and dear Wayne. We will all be Home soon, together in the presence of the Lord Jesus who gave all to redeem us.

It was a privilege and an honour to build your casket. Every inch of this project was done with love for the Lord Jesus, for you and your family and the saints, and for lost souls – with blood, sweat and tears. I built everything myself and did the upholstery as well. I felt very much dependent on the Lord to design and carry out this work. As the painting unfolded under my hands I had a great sense of the Lord’s guidance. I’m so glad yours was my first casket. There was just enough material on the particular roll to cover the interior. I believe the Lord chose that fabric just for you. I was a little discouraged that the work had a handmade, homemade look to it but now I’m thankful that it does, because it was made by me, just for you, from the Lord, in weakness and dependence.

It’s interesting that the casket idea was given to me a year before by a Christian brother who owns a high-end antiques business, but I never got around to actually starting one, as I was greatly discouraged from this vocation by various factors. The idea was still in my heart, and prompted by a Christian football movie Facing The Giants, I told my wife I wouldn’t waste any more time starting an art casket for sale as the Lord seemed to indicate that the door was still open to pursue this vocation of handmade caskets embellished with artwork (Rev, 3:7-8 I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it). Wayne called the next day to order yours. It was an incredible experience to see the Lord’s hand at work in our lives, fitting all the pieces together for His honour and glory.

So many people in my area have been affected by your going Home, seeing the casket in various stages. People would hear about it and call to ask if they could come over and see it. I met a Christian brother on the Internet who had built a casket for a Christian friend and he encouraged me to put it on a woodworking website. Thousands of people have seen it and heard your story, and of your faith in the Lord Jesus. Christian brothers on the woodworking website have also been praying for you.

My neighbours and family members have heard the gospel by seeing the lid with the verse that you chose, Psalm 16:11 In Thy presence is fullness of joy… and the verse I chose, John 14:6 I am the way, the truth and the life… and by hearing your story.

Your going Home is a very precious occasion to the Lord and He is using it mightily and faithfully. I am humbled and thankful that He chose me as His instrument to be a part of His taking you to be with Himself. I sorrow with many tears but I joy in the Lord that you will be with Him, and free from your pain.

Christy, you have been a tremendous blessing to me, as has been your dear husband and family. Great are your rewards. Perhaps I will not get to talk to you again on this side of Heaven, but I will see you up there as God has promised to those that love Him.

Until then, your brother in the Lord Jesus Christ,

Phil Brown

2 comments:

Idiopathogen said...

Phil,

Would it be possible to provide a link to the wood working site you are referring to?

Peter Rule.

Anonymous said...

Hi Peter

The link to the Lumberjocks woodworking showcase is

http://lumberjocks.com/

I submit projects under my name,
Phil Brown