Bobbye’s butterfly by Elizabeth Sterling


I woke up in the morning thinking about death. That is not so uncommon because as part of my practice, I surrender my life to God each morning. But this particular morning, I remember making myself really imagine what it would be like to die this very day.

Later that morning, I thought of my friend Bobbye who was very ill and in the hospital. I have been praying for her for the last few weeks since we learned that she had an obstruction in her bile ducts. I kept thinking about her all morning.

And then just before noon, we got the call. Bobbye died. One part of me was so happy that she did not have to suffer any more. She was really sick. Another part was so sad for how everyone must feel in her family, especially her two adoring grand-daughters. I cried for them.

I thought about what a terrific woman Bobbye was. She showered her family with love. She was devoted to her church. She stood up for her beliefs and what she thought was best for her community. She served her community in numerous ways. Every time I went to vote, Bobbye was there to greet me. We were both Southern transplants. Whenever, she saw me she let me know how pleased she was to know me in her own way.

As I was thinking about all this, I looked out my kitchen window at the hydrangea that just started blooming. The hydrangeas that were used as the flowers in my wedding came from that very bush. That made me think of the flower girl dresses that Bobbye made for my wedding for my three nieces (two of whom are her granddaughters).

Just then, a beautiful orange and black butterfly flew up and alit upon the hydrangea, it was a type of fritillary butterfly. It stayed there a long time drinking up nectar and basking in the sun, and I just knew that was Bobbye’s butterfly.

Bobbye has earned her wings! And she was a blessing to my life.

Love and blessings~


“Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” –Anonymous


“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live.” –John 11:25


Lord, we thank you for the life of Bobbye Benner. She was a role model for us all who had the heart of wisdom. She showed us how to love generously and live boldly. She is surrounded by your light now and will continue to grace us with her spirit as she always did. We celebrate her life and we ask that you would surround her family with your Love and peace, the peace that surpasses our understanding. Amen.

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