The bonds we create here on Earth are a blessing, too

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 11, 2008

By Harold Keller

Of the many blessings that we receive in a lifetime, the one most taken for granted is the people we meet in our journey toward eternity.  

Approximately ten years ago, I met Ms. Lillie at a drug treatment facility.  I’m happy to report that unlike most people who go to treatment centers, she has been sober ever since.  Over the years, she has kept in contact with me.

Five years ago, she asked if I would speak at the Victory House in Zachary, Louisiana.  This is a halfway house for addicts who had completed a 28-day treatment program.  

The night I spoke there, Ms. Lillie had an older couple with her – Rayfield and Eugenia Lang.  Mr. Rayfield died a year later at the age of 79.  “Mama” Lang, as she was called, always spoke of her husband’s heavenly home and added that one day she would be with him again.   

After Mr. Lang’s death, Ms. Lillie, “Mama” Lang, and a group of ladies from

Baton Rouge, traveled to Fontainebleau Treatment Center in Mandeville, Louisiana, several times a year to be with me and my wife and minister to the clients.  “Mama” Lang’s daughter, Florida, drove the group, which also included Ms. Rosie and Ms. Margarette.  I never cease to be amazed that a group of ladies took their Saturday night, dressed in their Sunday best, and enjoyed participating in what the clients call “Saturday Night Live.”  

Ms. Lillie always sings “There’s a Miracle in Store for You,” and the ladies fellowship and minister to the men after the meeting.  “Mama” Lang would often close with a prayer.  The staff and clients enjoyed their visits.  It’s been four years since the group from Baton Rouge first started coming to Fontainebleau.

Between visits, I would call Ms. Lillie and “Mama” Lang just to say “hello.”  

A week ago Sunday, I called “Mama” Lang.  It was early and I said, “It’s time to get up!”  Her reply was, “I’ve been up, but I just feel tired.”  We spoke a few minutes and I told her I loved her. “I love you, too,” she replied.  During our conversation, she repeated a few times, “I’m getting tired.”

Wednesday, Ms. Lillie called and said that “Mama” Lang passed away.  Evidently, she had a peaceful death just as God promises to his faithful servants. “Mama” Lang was 74.

When I called her daughter, Florida, I said, “I heard about “Mama” and, as Christians, I don’t sympathize with you.  I rejoice because she’s with her Heavenly Father and will see your daddy again.  I just thank God that He thought enough of me to bless me with the godly relationship I had with “Mama” Lang.  I’ll miss her.

If you have any questions, or comments, please write to Get High on Life, P.O. Drawer U, Reserve, LA 70084, call (9985) 652-8477, or e-mail: