On May 11, 2014, my sister Linda phoned. “Larry, Mom is not doing very well. Maybe you’d better fly home as soon as possible.”
I made reservations to fly back to Freeport, Illinois, as soon as I hung up.
Now, let me set the stage here:
My mom had celebrated her ninetieth birthday just four months earlier. She had lived in the Stephenson Counting Nursing Home for four years. She could not walk, suffered from advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and arthritis, but yet, she still enjoyed watching TV, reading, and talking with whomever stuck a head inside her room. She had just suffered from a severe pneumonia/COPD infection and had spent nine days in the Freeport Hospital.
I lived in Temecula, California. My sister, Linda, and her husband, Dennis, lived a few miles from the nursing home on the outskirts of Freeport. Before retirement, Linda had been the head of nursing at the nursing home for over thirty years. So, she knew the staff at the nursing home quite well and carefully watched over Mom’s daily care.
After I made the flight reservations, I slid off my desk chair and bowed my knees on the floor.
“Lord, I have believed for a long time that Mom gave her life to You at a Lowell Lundstrom Crusade in Polo, Illinois, many years ago. She never told me that, but I believed the vision You gave me about her conversion. If I am wrong, then You need to tell me because You are the Redeemer and love her more than I do.”
I remained on my knees for forty-five minutes or so. The Lord spoke some words to my heart for Mom.
I flew back to Illinois the next morning. Linda met me in Rockford and drove me to Freeport in her red Chevrolet. Because it was still early, I drove Linda’s car to the nursing home to see Mom.
I walked into Room 242. Mom was asleep and I sat down on a chair at the foot of her bed. I read a book. A few minutes later, she stirred and saw me.
“Son, how was your flight?” she asked.
I stood up and kissed her. Then, I sat down again.
“How are you doing?” I asked.
We small talked about her stay in the hospital and how she hated being there. Then, I spoke the words that the Lord gave me for her.
“What did you think when you went into the hospital?
“Well, you know…”
“No, I don’t know. What did you think?”
“I did not think I would ever leave the hospital again.”
“You thought you were going to die?”
“Mom, if I could, I would change places with you right now. You could have the years remaining in my life and I would take the little bit of time you have left in your life. Heaven is that great and I’d like to be there right now with Dad and Grandma and the others.”
“Oh, Larry, you wouldn’t do that!”
“Yes, I would. Heaven is that great a place.”
Mom looked at me for a moment.
“Larry, is heaven that good? Is that really so?”
Our conversation changed. We never again talked about heaven or death.
I stayed with my sister and brother-in-law home for a week. Each day, I spent hours with Mom, feeding her and doing whatever she wanted. We enjoyed our time together.
As I left her room for the last time, she said, “Larry, I love you.”
“Mom, I love you. You’re the greatest.”
When I left for California, I thought maybe she had dodged another bullet and would last a few years, but a month later, the Lord spoke to my heart.
“I am taking your mom home.”
Two days later, Linda phoned to tell me that Mom passed away that morning.
Once again, I want to remind everyone that the Lord spoke to me ahead of time about taking my mom home because of our friendship. It had nothing to do with my being a prophetic voice. Anyone can have this type of relationship with the Lord. All you have to do is spend quality time with Him.
(Taken from my memoir, The Hunt for Larry Who, by Larry Nevenhoven, © 2014, Amazon eBook)