Love-All

I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around this reality, but Janice Foster is with the Lord. Don’t get me wrong: my heart is thrilled by the thought of Janice meeting Jesus face-to-face; it’s just that I can’t imagine not reading another of her prayer updates, or seeing her smiling face in one of the hallways here at First Baptist Paducah.

Since I will be on the mission field on the other side of the globe Saturday, and unable to preach Janice’s funeral sermon, I wanted to devote my blog space today to honoring this amazing lady and devoted servant of Christ. As I write, I am both brokenhearted and overjoyed at the same time. I was not ready to say goodbye. It was way, way too soon for me. Perhaps you know exactly how I feel.

A strong and godly woman is not created by a formula or by a prescription, but by a mighty working of the Holy Spirit! Such was Janice. Janice reminded me of Deborah, the godly judge of Israel (see Judges 4 and 5). Both women were strategic leaders with stellar judgment. Deborah not only prophesied God’s Word, and performed the functions of her office according to God’s Word, but she even sang God’s Word. The Bible seems to be making a point: Deborah was a conduit of God’s blessing, wherever and however she served because Deborah belonged to God.

Quite beautifully similarly, Janice belonged to God. Every member of her family knew it. Her fellow teachers, and her former students, knew it. Our entire community knew it. For Janice, her commitment to the gospel was her life. She was who she was, and who she was was in Christ.

Much like Deborah, Janice was regal, valiant, and wise. Have you ever seen anyone face such serious health challenges with as much courageous optimism? Have you ever known anyone more capable of convincing you that the glass was half-full, instead of half-empty? Have you ever been more routinely blessed by the enduring friendship of anyone more faithful than Janice?

And here’s another amazing observation about our one-of-a-kind Janice: if you wanted a truthful answer to your question, Janice was your go-to comrade. There would be no spin or fanfare, but you would get the truth. I don’t have to tell you that truth is a priceless commodity these days, and I can’t begin to verbalize to you how much I’m going to miss that breath of fresh air.

Not only that, but Janice expressed the truth in love. She was as bighearted as she was brave-hearted. I will never forget Janice and Lynn waiting and praying with me while Eileen underwent a major surgery. Whether she was arranging flowers with artistry, serving a lonely neighbor in need, or orchestrating a large-scale event with excellence, Janice loved people. In that sense, Janice not only resembled Deborah, but she resembled Christ (John 1:14). Whether Janice was on or off the tennis court, the beauty and grace of her uncommon life preached a single message: LOVE-ALL.

Janice is now with Jesus. And, like our Savior, Janice is alive and well. We will see her again soon. For the treasured gift to us that was our dear sister, Janice Housman Foster, we give God thanks and praise. Into Your trustworthy hands, O Lord, we commit her spirit.

Pastor Charles

Posted in Blog Posts
17 comments on “Love-All
  1. Raymond Beverly says:

    Indeed, Janice Foster was a great lady. She and her family have been friends of mine for many, many years and I have sorrowed at her illness. A non-Biblical farewell to her comes from altering Horatio’s farewell to Shakespeare’s Hamlet- “Good night sweet Prince(ss), and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest”

  2. Gloria says:

    Beautifully said . She was one of the kindest,best people I know.

  3. Judy Sheppard says:

    So sad about this news. I didn’t even know she was ill. Thank you for posting such a beautiful tribute.

  4. Mary Zwart says:

    So sorry you all lost someone so special, but as you said, it is Heaven’s gain. We are on this earth for a reason, are we preparing for our next life? I know I fall short, but God is so dear to me, and has brought me many dear Christian friends to get me through this journey. When I call to him, he is always there, I feel the peace that he gives. May God comfort you all at this time.

  5. Tracey says:

    A godly woman who was a gracious mentor and example to me for many, many years. I will miss her deeply, and I won’t ever forget her.

  6. Carla says:

    Mrs. Foster was my teacher in high school. I absolutely adored her. I knew immediately she was a Christian woman. She went through so much but did it with grace. Many Prayers for her family.

  7. David Bailey says:

    Thanks so much for your words about Janice! I couldn’t agree with you more. Safe travels on the mission field!

  8. Sarah says:

    Thank you, Pastor Charles…words well thought and true. May God continue to bless you and yours.

  9. Jamie Barnes says:

    You knew her well. I will miss her, but I know we will be reunited soon.

  10. Delbert Pruitt says:

    Thanks for this post Charles. Great comments!🙏

  11. Lynn Foster says:

    Even though you were on the other side of the world you preached her funeral rather well.

  12. What a wonderful testament to Janice and her well lived Christian life !

  13. Brenda McElroy says:

    You said it well! Janice was always positive. Always kind! Always ready to help anyone with a smile. I loved her and I will miss her.

  14. Dennis Lapidus says:

    A very special and moving tribute to a special lady. Lynn is also a very wonderful man. I wish him the best and trust that his love will prevail.

  15. Sue Rochester says:

    What a wonderful tribute to Janice. Her smile could light up a room and indeed she was always upbeat and kind. She is in a better place with no pain and happy to be at peace. We will miss her. To Lynn we send our prayers and hugs.

  16. Ralph VanPeursem says:

    What a beautiful commentary. I am sorry I didn’t meet Janice. I wish I had that opportunity. It looks as thought I will meet her soon. Thank you Pastor Moore

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