"I commend to you our sister...who is a servant of the church.."  (Romans 16:1)

A Tribute to Asha Erickson

By Kurt Erickson

On Oct 1, 2008, there was held in London a Celebration of Life/Funeral Service for Asha Erickson, wife of Kurt Erickson. Over 300 people attended this event to pay tribute to a woman who gave all her life in the service of God and poured out that life to everyone she met. Following is an excerpt from that gathering given by her husband Kurt:

“I stand here today, not because I necessarily desired to be the one giving this address, or to fulfil some sort of self-imposed endurance test. I am speaking today to fulfil a vow, given by me to Asha who insisted that I, not only her husband, but also her pastor, should give this address. I am honored to speak on her behalf today.

“Every life will be seen in the context of two results. It will either be an example or a warning; Asha truly left an example to follow.”

We are gathered together to pay tribute to a woman who gave her all to everyone she met. Asha was a woman from a very good stock. What exactly does that mean? It means that she understood her heritage and never forgot her humble roots growing up in a small village in Trinidad. She always remained amazed and in awe over the fact that God would use her in the ways He did. I realize that today, as we have in attendance among us the very wealthy, as well as, well, those who are now sleeping on the streets. Some have traveled from all over London and the UK, while others from the Four Corners of the globe. We have in our presence, lawyers, doctors, educators, poets, grannies, children, nurses, administrators and pastors, as well as the hurting, addicted, broken hearted, and outcast. Of all those represented here today, I stand before you as the wealthiest of them all. Proverbs states, 'Who can find a virtuous and capable wife? She is more precious than rubies. Her husband can trust her, and she will greatly enrich his life. (Prov 31:10 nkjv)

Wesley, Kurt and Asha's son

I stand before you today as a very wealthy man. Asha was that virtuous wife and in that, I am a very wealthy man.

Asha possessed a beauty that radiated her whole presence and captivated everyone who knew her. As we look at her coffin and realize that there lies her body; we also know that she is no longer in that body, which now remains as only a physical representation of how she looked on earth. If one thought she was beautiful on earth, they should look at her now! Now she owns a glorified body that is radiant and without sickness and disease. Truly, death has been conquered.

“Asha possessed a beauty that radiated her whole presence and captivated everyone who knew her.”

The day of her death will always be remembered, for it was also the day of our anniversary. On September 22, 1990 between 1 and 2 p.m. (EST), we made our vows to love each other, to be faithful and loyal as long as we both shall live. We have fulfilled that promise to each other. On September 22, 2008, between 6 and 7 p.m. (GMT) (at the very same hour local time a generation later) her hand was released from her earthly husband's hand and was placed in the hand of her heavenly husband. This prophetic reality has brought immense peace to me when I realize God's timing in our lives. He is always in complete control.

Asha was a woman prepared. In all my years of ministry I have never witnessed a person whose heart was more prepared to meet God. I have been asked continually how Asha kept her heart so prepared during this long and incredible struggle.

Adam, Kurt and Asha's son

Three things spring to mind:

First, it was her faith. This faith which transformed her life almost 30 years earlier and sustained her throughout the years. It was this sustaining faith that brought her halfway across the world to stand side by side with her husband, and partner a work among the children living in London’s East End, as well as the homeless and the broken-hearted that continually came into her life.

Second, along with her faith, Asha carried an unshakable hope that acted as her bedrock to meet every and any need that would arise. She understood the principle that all things will work for good to those who love the Lord. She always saw God as a very present reality in her life and for her family.

And third, these two entities created an infectious love that radiated throughout her entire being. Her love, being first and foremost directed towards God, was carried over without restraint toward her husband and her two sons. Her family was always the main focus of her ministry. This love always spilled over to those whom God would bring into our lives, into our hearts and into our home. Many of you in this place today are here because of that love that poured out from her life toward you.

“I stand before you today as a very wealthy man. Asha was that virtuous wife and in that, I am a very wealthy man.”

Each passing, from this life to the next, brings to light the reality that everyone must face. We all leave some sort of legacy. Every life will be seen in the context of two results. It will either be an example or a warning; Asha truly left an example to follow.

We would often share a truth that was taught to us by the example of the great Evangelist Dwight Moody, who said on his death bed, 'When you hear the rumor that Dwight Moody has died, don't you believe it, because when I leave here I'll be more alive than ever'. Today, my friends, I leave you with this, when you hear the rumor that Asha Erickson has died, don't you believe it, for now, she is more alive than ever!”

Pastor Kurt Erickson

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