Reflections of My Life...
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
~ II Timothy 4:7-8
It all began one cold winter day, as I was born, an only child, to the loving care of the late William Wallace Garner and Lucy Moss Garner. Growing up in rural southern Virginia; I was educated in the Greensville County School System.
In our home, not only was the goodness of the Lord taught; it was believed and lived! At the tender age of 13, I accepted Christ, was baptized and became a member of the Jerusalem Baptist Church, Emporia, Virginia, under the leadership of the late Reverend W. E. Battle. As a woman of faith and lifelong member of the church, I’ve served in various capacities, including: Program Committee Chairperson, Youth Department Supervisor, Past Senior Choir President, Past Usher’s Ministry President, Assistant Chairperson of the Sunday School and Clerk of the Obituary Department of the church. Oftentimes I’ve served as Mistress of Ceremonies on many occasions at Jerusalem and various churches throughout the community. As a servant for my Lord and Savior, working in the church was a task I enjoyed very much, as any task put upon me.
Early in life, I was united in Holy Matrimony to the late Collin C. High and we were blessed with two handsome sons. In addition to my parents and husband, I was preceded in death by my youngest son, Lorenza Garner.
In the latter part of 2005, I united in Christian fellowship with the Shearins Chapel Baptist Church Monday Night Bible Study Class, under the tutelage of the late Pastor Lynne J. Bradley; where his teachings and my desire to learn knew no boundaries. This time of fellowship is where my love for God deepened and my spiritual gifts were nurtured.
Over the years, I’ve been no stranger to hard work. Seeing the need to help provide for my family, I’ve held various positions of employment. After many years of dedicated service, I retired from J. P. Stevens Textile Mills (West Point Stevens). After which, I furthered my education by enrolling at Halifax Community College of Weldon, North Carolina, where I successfully completed my studies to become a Certified Nursing Assistant and Personal Care Aide. My passion for meeting new people afforded me the opportunity to work at Kingdom Treasures, a church supply store, located in Roanoke Rapids. In the late 1990’s, I served as office assistant at Faison’s Funeral Home in Seaboard. In recent years, I volunteered at the Jo Story Senior Center, located in Roanoke Rapids. My service and employment was not viewed as mere work, but as a place where I could be me and embrace those around me with love. It was during these times, I could give words of inspiration, sing sweet melodies and serve my community “If I can help somebody, as I pass along. If I can cheer somebody, with a word or song, If I can show somebody that he's travelling wrong, Then my living shall not be in vain. If I can do my duty, as a good woman ought, If I can bring back beauty, to a world up wrought. If I can spread love's message, as the Master taught, Then my living shall not be in vain.”
“My prayers have all been answered, I've finally arrived. The healing that has been delayed, Has now been realized. No one's in a hurry, No more schedules to keep. I'm enjoying Jesus, just sitting at His feet. If you could see me now, I'm walking streets of gold. If you could see me now, I'm standing tall and whole. If you could see me now, You'd know I've seen Him face to face; If you could only see me now. Though I've had my sorrows, They never can compare, To what Jesus has in store for me, No language can ever share. You wouldn’t want me to leave this perfect place, If you could only see me now...” On Monday, October 26, 2020; while I rested comfortably in my earthly home, the Lord Himself dispatched one of his heavenly angels to escort me to that building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.
I could not stay another day, To laugh, to live, to work or play. Tasks left undone must stay that way, I've found sweet peace at the close of the day… Be not burdened with times of sorrow, I wish you sunshine of tomorrow. My life's been full, I've savored much...Good friends, good times, a loved one's touch. As I now rest safely in the arms of Jesus, awaiting the day when all the saints of God shall gather, I leave to cherish my life’s memories to: my loving and adorable son, Wallace Randolph ‘RJ’ Garner; my very special grandchildren, Randell, Rondell, Rontray, Lamonte, MaRendia, Atyia and Princess; nine great-grandchildren; my darling godmother, Magnolia Allen; daughters-at-heart, Rethella Barnes, Dora King, Frances Alston and Rita Bridges; sons-at-heart, Robert Lee Arrington and Edwin Webb; sisters and brothers-at-heart, Dorothy, Eloise, Brenda, Mary Magdalene, Joe Jr., Waverly and Frankie; host of other relatives and friends.
I love each and every one of you! You all were a very important part of my life - my very being. For this I am forever grateful. My prayer is that you will be inspired by my life and legacy; unite in love and continue to plant seeds of goodness, seeds of kindness and seeds of blessings that will ultimately bestow your hearts, your work, and your being. For whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall lose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. (Matthew 18:18)
TO GOD BE THE GLORY, as I bid you all a Lovely Farewell,
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