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Subject: Keep your 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 Minister 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 Minister 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 Minister's reply.

"This is very important," the young woman continued. "I want to be

buried with a fork in my right hand."

The Minister 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 Minister.

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 and 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, and with substance!"

So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my

hand and 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 Minister'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. But 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 and


She KNEW that something better was coming. At the funeral people were

walking by the young woman's casket and they saw the fork placed in her

right hand. Over and over, the Minister heard the question

"What's with the fork?" And over and over he smiled.

During his message, the Minister told the people of the conversation he had

with the young woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the

fork and about what it symbolized to her. He told the people how he could

not stop thinking about the fork and 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 praise, and 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 may be their time to "Keep your fork."

Cherish the time you have, and the memories you share ... being friends

with someone is not an opportunity but a sweet responsibility.

A Friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back

to you when you have forgotten the words :-).

"If you judge people, you have no time to love them."

"Good friends are like stars...You don't always see them,

but you know they are always there."

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This has me sitting here with tears running down my face. It brings back so many memories.

Randy has his fork with him. People asked about why I put a fork in his shirt pocket and I shared this same story with them.

May we all have forks with us when the time comes.

Keep your eyes open......there are so many miracles that happen and we just don't see them for what they are.

Much love,


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