I’ll Fly Away
Grandma was the glue that held our tears in, unleashed laughter, provided comfort, warmth, and hot meals no matter when or why we asked. Maybe you have someone like this in your life, too.
It was 2010, and I’d just received the call that Grandma had suffered complications from an abdominal aortic aneurysm. Things were bad. I closed my eyes and begged Jesus, “No, not yet. Please don’t take her from us!”
As I arrived at the hospital, she was being rolled back to the operating room where they’d perform what was supposed to be a three-hour surgery. From the hallway, we all spoke out to her, “I love you, Nana! We’ll see you when you get out.”
Two surgeries and thirteen hours passed. All the kids and grandkids circled around her in disbelief. Who was this woman? She didn’t look or feel like Grandma, yet she was hanging on. Maybe you’ve experienced a moment like this.
My mother and aunt kindly leaned in and whispered in both ears, “Mother, go home to see daddy. We’ll be okay—we promise. You’ve done your job here, and you did it well!”
We grabbed hands and started singing, “Like a bird from prison bars has flown, I'll fly away. … To a land where joy shall never end, I’ll fly away.”
Just a few lines into the hymn, she left the prison of a body she was in and handed us the keys. “When I die, hallelujah by and by, I’ll fly away.”
These peace-filled lyrics that invited Grandma to go and meet her heavenly Father are the same peaceful words that allowed us confidently to send her off “to a home on God's celestial shore.”
This hymn makes the same promise you can have, that I have in Christ. He has defeated death to give us life so that we can say, “Some bright morning when this life is o’er,
I'll fly away.”
Pray: Jesus, would You give me the unsurpassed peace of Heaven here on Earth? Give me the boldness to live my life like death is not the end, knowing that You’ve prepared a place for me. Amen.