I went to a funeral today. I went to a funeral for a woman I had not seen in years but loved her so much. I went to a funeral today and the emotions overcame me. They started to play the piano, the organ and the sweet hymns of old and I knew that this sweet lady was with the Lord and I knew the Lord was in that place.
Sweet Nadyne Swaffer...a woman you couldn't help but to love! One of the sweetest, if not the sweetest, women I have ever had the honor of knowing. I worked with her at Little Rocks First Baptist Church. She was, until last Thursday, the receptionist plus so much more at the church and had been working there for somewhere around 25 years. She was 70 years old. In our office we were in a pod type room. There were 3 pastors, 2 secretaries and Nadyne. The way the room was set I could hear everything Nadyne said to everyone and how she answered the phone each and every time. She never had an ugly word to say about anyone. No matter who you were she made you feel loved and like she had known you for your entire life. I never once heard her answer the phone in a harsh tone or treat anyone as if she didn't want to help them or have time for them. If you have ever been one to answer the phones, you know that is not an easy task and especially not for 25ish years. She was hilarious, although I'm not so sure she meant to be, I think maybe she had some blonde roots but that just added to her sweet disposition.
We had so many laughs in that office! It was the best office to be in, in the church. Great memories! Nadyne, Steve Bushey, Lewie Clark, Dave Lewis, Carmen/Cheryl and me. What a group. A place where we could laugh, cry, work and pray for people. It's where I learned about discipleship and missions. It's where I became intimate with Christ. And whenever I think of the people who have shown Christ to me, Nadyne Swaffer is one of the first to come to my mind.
She had the sweetest southern voice, a gentle soul, the kind of woman I would have loved to have had as a Mom and the kind of woman I would love to be like.
Within about the last month the church had done a series or sermon on suffering and asked Nadyne to be a part of a video. They showed the video today. She read Psalm 57:1 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed. Nadyne's disaster has passed and she is now forever with her God. He had mercy on her and took her home.
Sweet Nadyne you will always be remembered in this heart with the fondest of memories and the kindest of thoughts. My only regret is that I had not seen her in so many years. How I wish I had known she had cancer and how I wish I had gone to see her. I will see her again though and we will have the best of times there - in Heaven!!!!