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Keep your fork

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Big Muddy rancher

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>>> >>> This one hits home, because it was a family joke that if we
>>>> didn't have company for dinner, Mom would always say "keep your fork"
>>>> if
>>>> we wanted dessert!
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> Woman and a Fork
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> There was a young 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.
>>>>>
>>>>> Everything was in order and the Pastor was preparing
>>>>>
>>>>> to leave when the young 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 young woman continued.
>>>>>
>>>>> "I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand."
>>>>>
>>>>> The Pastor stood looking at the young woman, not
>>>>>
>>>>> knowing quite what to say.
>>>>>
>>>>> "That surprises you, doesn't it?" the young woman
>>>>>
>>>>> asked. "Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the request,"
>>>> said
>>>>>
>>>>> the Pastor. The young woman explained. "My grandmother once
>>>> told
>>>>>
>>>>> me this story, and from that time on I have always
>>>>>
>>>>> tried to pass along its message to those I love and
>>>>>
>>>>> those who are in need of encouragement.
>>>>>
>>>>> In all my years of attending socials and dinners, I
>>>>>
>>>>> always remember that when the dishes of the main
>>>>>
>>>>> course were being cleared, someone would inevitably
>>>>>
>>>>> lean over & 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 & with substance!
>>>>>
>>>>> So, I just want people to see me there in that
>>>>>
>>>>> casket with a fork in my hand & I want them to wonder
>>>>>
>>>>> "What's with the fork?" Then I want you to tell them:
>>>>>
>>>>> "Keep your fork - the best is yet to come."
>>>>>
>>>>> The Pastor's eyes welled up with tears of joy as he
>>>>>
>>>>> hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew this would be
>>>>>
>>>>> one of the last times he would see her before her
>>>>>
>>>>> death. He also knew that the young woman had a better
>>>>>
>>>>> grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp of
>>>>>
>>>>> what heaven would be like than many people twice her
>>>>>
>>>>> age, with twice as much experience & knowledge. She
>>>>>
>>>>> KNEW that something better was coming.
>>>>>
>>>>> At the funeral people were walking by the young
>>>>>
>>>>> woman's casket; they saw the cloak she was wearing &
>>>>>
>>>>> the fork placed in her right hand. Over & over, the
>>>>>
>>>>> Pastor heard the question, "What's with the fork?"
>>>>>
>>>>> And over & over he smiled.
>>>>>
>>>>> During his message, the Pastor told the people of the
>>>>>
>>>>> conversation he had with the young woman shortly
>>>>>
>>>>> before she died. He also told them about the fork &
>>>>>
>>>>> about what it symbolized to her. He told the people
>>>>>
>>>>> how he could not stop thinking about the fork & 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. Friends are a very rare jewel, indeed. They make
>>>>>
>>>>> you smile and encourage you to succeed. They lend an
>>>>>
>>>>> ear, they share a word of p raise, & they always want
>>>>>
>>>>> to open their hearts to us.
>>>>>
>>>>> Show your friends how much you care. Remember to
>>>>>
>>>>> always be there for them, even when you need them
>>>>>
>>>>> more. For you never know when it maybe their time to
>>>>>
>>>>> "Keep their fork." Cherish the time you have, & the memories
>>>>>
>>>>> you share. Being friends with someone is not an
>>>>>
>>>>> opportunity but a sweet responsibility.
 

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