Keep your fork 

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Ervin Smith pastors the New Solomon Grove B.C. in Pine Mountain, Georgia. Hear ye him.
"Keep your fork." 

 There was a woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had 
been given  three months to live. So as she was getting her things "in 
order", she contacted her pastor and had him  come to her house to discuss 
certain aspects of  her final wishes. She told him which songs she wanted 
sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit 
she wanted to be buried  in.  The woman also requested to be buried with her favorite Bible. Everything was in order and the pastor was preparing to 
leave when the woman suddenly remembered something very important to her. 

 "There's one more thing," she said excitedly. 

 "What's that?" came the pastor's reply. 

 "This is very important," the woman continued. "I want to be buried with a 
fork in my right hand." 

 The pastor stood looking at the woman, not  knowing quite what to say. 

 "That surprises you, doesn't it?", the woman asked. 

 "Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the request," said the pastor. 

 The woman explained. "In all my years of attending church socials and 
potluck dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main courses 
were being cleared,  someone would inevitably lean over and say,  "Keep your  fork". It was my favorite part because I knew that something better was  coming...like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie.   Something  wonderful, and with substance!  So, I just want people to see me there in  that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder  "What's with  the fork?". Then I want you to tell hem: 

 "Keep your fork.  The best is yet to come.  "The pastor's eyes welled up 
with tears of joy as he hugged the woman good-bye. He knew this would be one  of the last times he would see  her before her death. But he also knew that  the woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did.  She KNEW that something  better was coming. At the  funeral people were walking by the woman's casket  and they saw the pretty dress she was wearing another favorite Bible and the  fork placed in  her right hand. 

 Over and over, the pastor heard the question "What's with the fork?"   And 
over and over he smiled. 

 During his message, the pastor told the people of the conversation he had 
with the woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and  about what it symbolized to her. The pastor told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be  able to stop thinking about it either. He was right. So the next time you  reach down for your fork, let it remind you ever so gently, that the best is  yet to come.


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