The Anchor Moved

Seven years ago this morning the world as I knew it changed. All of my life I tied my trust to an anchor, an immovable rock, a bastion of strength that never faded and never faltered. I set my direction and charted my course from the constancy of life displayed by that anchor. At 7:55am on October 30, 2007, that anchor moved.

On the 12th floor of the Methodist Hospital in the Texas Medical Center, Franklin Jones “slipped the surly bonds of earth and kissed the face of God.” His life ended with the same dignity and grace in which it had been lived. My brother and my sister stood with our mother and me around his bed and counted his slowing breaths until he inhaled no more.

The most sublime expression crept across my dad’s face as his spirit man cut the tether that had held it earthbound for almost 75 years and jetted through the air to that unknown place where the saved of earth gather. His physical body accelerated its downward spiral to return to the dust from whence it came, and his spirit returned to God, it’s rightful owner.

  • What must it be to exhale in Houston and to inhale in Glory?
  • What must it be to hear the fading, faint sound of those you love bidding you goodbye, and slowly become aware of those you loved in a past life welcoming you with glad shouts of welcome?
  • What must it be for a veil of darkness to descend over your consciousness and your eyes, and then lift to reveal a cognizance so vivid that it appears like a rainbow encircling a throne?
  • What must it be to march away from the thousands who love you and will miss your discerning, guiding and knowing voice, and to march into a throng of welcoming, rejoicing and happy people who arrived in their destination because of your discerning, guiding and knowing voice?
  • What must it be to bid goodbye to Earth to say hello to Paradise?
  • What must it be to see the face you told so many about?
  • What must be to know every prayer, every preparation, and every sermon served its purpose and completed its work?

What must it be?
I don’t know.
But my Dad knows.

How beautiful heaven must be,
Sweet home of the happy and free,
Fair haven of rest for the weary,
How beautiful heaven must be.

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Comments (20)

  1. Thank you Pastor Brett for sharing this life-changing blog entry. My life has been impacted by these heartfelt words. I was privileged to meet this giant in an earthen vessel, and I'm also honored to serve with you and the Grace team as we expand this wonderful legacy. I appreciate you and your family for sharing him with us.

  2. What an honor to have known this great man you speak of, which was known to you as Daddy. Your eloquent words stand as a beacon of testimony to that same manner of a man, that lives on through you! Thank you for being a great man of God, and for sharing your father with so many! Truly an Angel!

  3. I did not know your dad but I know the family he left behind and all the goodness described of your dad is surely reflecting in them all.

    It is evident that his legacy lives on in those loved ones of whom he bid adieu. It is that love shown, that attracted my family to where we am today, sharing Goodness and Love thru Gods Word.

    You wrote a very sweet and loving tribute and, I'm sure, very well deserved.

    God Bless You All

  4. Brett…This was so beautiful to read. It made my imagination soar and reminded me that is the moment in time we are all living for.

    Love to all…please keep in touch.

    Your friend

    Tammy Miller McColley

  5. I just found your blog. I've read many in the archives. I miss you, your wisdom and your leadership. I remember your Dad. While he was alive, he was a Dad to so many. Many of the girls at Harkins House benefitted from his fatherly wisdom to them. I will never forget how much we enjoyed him and your Mom's visits to our home. Thank you for taking time to share your wisdom on this blog site. I needed to be reminded that although my life is different now, I still have ministry in me until God calls me home. I love you, Pastor Brett!
    Shirley Davis

  6. What a beautiful tribute! He was truly one-of-a-kind! How blessed we all were/are to have experienced Franklin Jones! (And the Jones family). Love to all of you.

  7. This is beautiful and looks like you should write a book soon! I have shared the story of your Dad's passing to many people. I have been with people going through their last days on earth – you should see their faces when I share the part where the sun is shining on the window, and your Dad's breath is three inhales here and then two in heaven and so on. It really brings peace to all ! Thank you for sharing with us. Donna Lowry

  8. I know just what you are saying. I felt the same way when Mom did the same. It was such mixed feeling one of joy for her, but sadness for those of us that witnessed her being free of s sick body. We were praising God as we cried. Your words about your Dad. are so wonderfully worded. I expressed to him how much I missed Mom and he said to me, " You wouldn't want to bring her back if you could". I was so blessed to set under his ministry for so many years.

  9. Didn’t know you had this blog, thankful to have found it. When your dad would hug you and Pastor Scott so openly I always wondered what that would be like, to have that kind of love and affection from a Father. He was so kind and gentle but firm and unshakable with his convictions. I miss him tremendously. I also miss you, Pastor Brett as you have his same characteristics. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  10. Thank you Pastor Brett for those words that encourage me. Although, I have not experienced the departure of any of my parents, I often wonder how that will feels like. I know that moment is close. This is a great perspective that I will definitely have on my mind when that occurs.