This page is a recap of the Celebration of Life what was held for Robert E. Goll (Bob) at 3:00PM on April 29, 2023 at Abiding Faith Bible Church.
- WELCOME / INTRODUCTION – Pastor Mike Lehman
- MUSIC / WORSHIP
- SCRIPTURE READING – Isaiah Goll (Grandson)
- FAMILY SHARE
- MESSAGE – Pastor Mike Lehman
- CLOSING WORSHIP & PRAYER
WELCOME / INTRODUCTION – Pastor Mike Lehman
MUSIC / WORSHIP
- “How Great Thou Art”
- “In Christ Alone”
SCRIPTURE READING – Isaiah Goll (Grandson)
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 6:23
Elijah Goll (Grandson)
Papa, that’s what I called my grandpa, was wonderful. He would work in the garden, play ball, paint, build, and do many more things with me. He was always ready to lend me a hand, give me a bottle of spray paint, or even teach me about different angles during a game of pool. If I ever needed help with something my dad didn’t know how to do I would “just wait and ask Papa.” If I ever did something wrong he would ask “Would Jesus do that?” During the last days of his life my family had a yard sale. Over the three days of the sale, he was there every day. During those three days, he played games, ate cookies, tried to fix our lawnmower and mowed parts of our lawn, painted a door, and did many more things with us. I will never forget seeing him riding in on his motorcycle on the last day of the sale. The day after the sale I learned that he was in the hospital. After going to three hospitals he ended up in UH. My family visited him over the course of about a week and a half. The last time I saw him we took a picture together, each smiling and our thumbs up. I didn’t know that was the last time I’d see him in this world. It is easy to remember the date that he died because he died on April 26,2023-my youngest brother Josiah’s birthday.
Papa tried to live up to 1 Corinthians 10:31 Which says: So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
I agree with Ecclesiastes 3:2 which says: ”A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;” I believe God’s timing is best.
During his life Papa has been such a blessing to me.
Love you Papa!
Robert Goll (Son)
Thank you all for coming to support our family and express your care for my dad today. In addition to seeing friends, it is also great to meet those who were in my dad’s life, whom we may not have met.
As Elijah mentioned, two weeks ago today my dad was doing great. It is amazing how quickly life can change.
Thirteen years ago, when Elyse and I moved back to the US, I had a few things that I was hoping would come from the time in the States. One was to have opportunities to connect with my dad, another was to learn how to fix things around the house. As we bought a fixer-upper house, God provided to do both as my dad and I were continually working together. Though it was a lot of work, it was a great opportunity to connect and learn. God is completely in control and he is perfectly good and provided for this difficult but meaningful time. That time created many wonderful, and meaningful, memories.
He continued to use his fix-it skills to bless as he loved to work on widows’ homes, and to bring my boys when he could, to help them to learn and to experience the bigger world of service.
He was always very generous with his resources and time, loving to give and to serve. To the end, we rarely heard my dad complain. Even in the final days, when he was doing better in the up and down of the final week, he didn’t complain, but continued to laugh and focus on others.
As Elyse and I were thinking about Dad’s life and what to say here, we noticed that dad also beat me out in a lot of ways.
- He gave Elyse a flower before I did.
- He gave Elyse a car ride and also a motorcycle ride before I did.
- He took care of one of Elyse’s long standing desires of fixing and painting our side garage door together with Isaiah, before I did, 4 days before going into the hospital.
- He also walked Elyse down the aisle to give her away when we were married, since her dad couldn’t make it from China.
- He also beat all of us to have faith become sight as he stands in the presence of his glorious Savior.
It is that final one that was most noticed this past week. While it was an emotional week of watching my dad come and go, and seemingly recover, and then regress, there was a tremendous peace. There was no fear of death. We had time to sing and pray together. During this week, we saw my parents’ intentionally talking about Jesus with everyone who came by. They had “Jesus Loves You” cards such as this one that they would give out and explain to everyone who came to work with dad. After dad passed from this life to the glories of the presence of Jesus, we stayed for a while, then said our final good-byes. As we were leaving, mom surprised me by asking one of the nurses a question, “Where is Joseph?” Joseph had been there, taking care of my family at the end, but my mom had not yet shared about Jesus with him. Her focus after saying goodbye to her husband was to give Joseph the best gift she could, to make sure that he had heard about Jesus.
One of the verses on the card is Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”.
And as Isaiah read from Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death”.
I love my dad, but he did not deserve to go to heaven, to be with Jesus. He was a sinner, as we all are. Honestly, on our own, we all, including my dad, deserve to be apart from God forever, to suffer death in hell.
But Isaiah, didn’t stop reading there! The full verse is, “For the wages of sin is death, BUT the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
For those who are “in Christ Jesus our Lord” God has given the gift of eternal life!
Today is not about my dad. Today is not about any of us. Today, and every day, is about Jesus, who he is, and what he did!
It is because of Jesus that my dad is now with him in heaven. It is because of Jesus that we do not need to fear death. It is because of Jesus, that you can have peace and purpose even in the trials of life.
It is because of Jesus that we can echo 1 Corinthians 15, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 15:55-57).
What I experienced in the hospital this week was the truth of 1 Thessalonians 4:13, “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.”
We grieve the loss of my dad. We will continue to grieve for years, but it can be a joyful grieving. A grieving with a certain hope. We mourn for ourselves, for our temporary loss, but we do not grieve for my dad. We rejoice for my dad, and look forward to joining him in worshiping the Savior. We rejoice not only that the pain has stopped, but even more that his life abundant, in the presence of the Savior, free from sin and death, has begun!
We can have the certain hope that God is completely in control of all things, and God is good. He can use even the hardest times of life for the good of his people and for his glory.
If Christ is not yet the Lord of your life, perhaps today is the day that Jesus will draw you to himself. Then you will be able to rejoice with us, even in the mourning.
We are so grateful that you are here today. Thank you for coming. :o)
Laura Goll (Daughter)
Thank you all for being here – you’re so special to Dad and all of us. Nothing feels adequate, but God answered the prayer and gave the words. I have told Dad these things so I’m thankful he knows. It would just be honoring and healing to share in this together. I cried the whole time I wrote this so prayers appreciated to make it through.
This is titled “Thank you”. The pictures from the slideshow really speak to these words.
Thank you, Dad, for you and Mom loving each other and sticking together through many of life’s ups and downs.
Thank you for loving being a Dad and wanting us with you, whether at your office, coaching and playing sports, going for a ride, helping someone, camping or fixing something…we knew you wanted us with you, even if it would take you longer.
Thank you, Dad, for your zeal for life – you just really dove into each new adventure or challenge, game, new “shortcut”… You taught us to not be afraid to try new things and learn on the way. ***I remember coming into the kitchen to parts and pieces of something all over the kitchen table and asking, “How do you know where everything goes?” and he’d answer, “I don’t, but we’ll figure it out.”
Thank you for your tender heart. You deeply care about people everywhere – family, neighbors, church, friends, office staff, clients, kids in need and all kids, coffee shop guys, local cashier, unknown people cutting the neighbor’s grass – ***Just a few days ago, we were leaving for a walk and the next door lawn service man suddenly shouted and started running towards us, and said “Hey, hey! I’m so sorry – Every time I would come cut the grass over here, Bob would come over and give me a vegetable from his garden.” Dad, you noticed and loved them and showed it in such practical ways.
Thank you, Dad, for making church a priority – even with a very full life, you and Mom took us to church and got involved, showing us what being a part of the body means.
Thank you for accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. We know where you are, how free, healed, and happy you are, and that we’ll see each other again – sooner to you than us, and that makes missing you so much a bit lighter.
That is why the cards are here that say “Jesus Loves You” with the way to know for sure you’re going to heaven. Even in the hospital these past two weeks, Mom and Dad would pass these cards out and say, “This is the most loving thing we could give you.” With how Dad loved for everyone to be together, loved to help people, loved to explore a path and see what’s there, and loved to make sure people were taken care of, it would just make him so happy to know that in this moment he was helping someone here with the most important need and decision of their life – to be certain of their eternal plan.
If you were to die today, do you know for certain you are going to heaven or is that something you’re still working on? If you were standing before God and He asks, “Why should I let you into my heaven, what would you say?” The Bible says we can know these answers for sure. As Isaiah shared earlier, Romans 6:23 says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord”. The back of the card has more verses and a prayer to lead you through. Please pick one or a few up before you go – to read or share with someone. If you have any questions or want to talk through this, any one of our family would be honored and this church is incredibly warm and kind to explore further.
So, Dad, thank you. You modeled kindness, service, fun, laughter, generosity, perseverance, gratitude, overcoming, giving, commitment, faithfulness, initiative, servant leadership, stewardship, provision, honesty, hard work, and love.
I am so thankful and blessed to call you Dad and we all are so blessed by what you were to all of us and so many others. Thank you, God, for giving him to us all and thank you for taking the best care of him until we get one of Dad’s huge bear hugs where You promise there are no more tears or goodbyes. I and we love you, Dad. Well done.
Julia Goll (Daughter)
You wanted to provide for your family
Of this we were always sure
Your focus was to make a way
For us to be secure
You’d coach our games to be present
Then go back to work if need be
Wanting to make sure we had time
And also food available readily
You were always willing and open to serve
Even on family vacation
We went to a church that was states away
Then gladly followed you into action
Instead of doing nothing that day
Or tromping to the beach
We joyfully returned for their grounds cleanup time
With a church family normally out of reach
And if we were tired from these escapades
Or sports or late night outings
Whether we faked sleep or not
You’d carry us in without pouting
You’d tuck us in or we’d magically awake
For a game of jump over the covers
You’d read a story or come up with one
As a team of both father and mother
As a team you taught us to know Jesus
And to intentionally make Him known
For He is the reason why we are here
These lives are His alone
Dad is now with Jesus
His eternal life is secure
For he confessed his sins and asked Jesus in
The risen LORD makes us pure
None of us are perfect
LORD knows we need His help
If there’s one thing Dad would want
It’s this for us to tell
That Jesus loves us, this we know
Is such a sweet, true song
Yet He loves us enough to give us the choice
To choose His ways or to go with the rest of the throng
I’m sure as Dad’s in heaven
He’s saying, “Gosh, you guys have no idea!
Life is short, but this is so much more!
Can’t wait for you to see it!”
Dad, we’ve always known you were a trailblazer
Up for adventure and teaching us to live
Once again you’re going ahead
Your tender heart exploding to give
We’ll see you soon up there
And give you hugs again
Until then all the things you taught us
We will use while in this skin
You’re a Husband, You’re a Father
You’re a Papa, Brother, Neighbor, Friend
Your legacy lives on in all of us
You were faithful to the end
A God n’Julia poem written 4/28/23
Dad’s Celebration of Life 4/29/23
The card mentioned in the talks that our parents were passionate about giving out as a conversation starter about their Lord and Savior!