Little Jennie was eight years old, March 30, 1886. The following April, she was taken very sick, and from that time until June 4, she seemed a little suffering angel. Then Jesus, who bad so blessedly sustained her during all her sufferings, took her to Himself. She would say, when able to talk: “Mamma, I do not care what I suffer, God knows best.”
When she was very low, we would often see her dear lips moving, and, listening, hear her praying. She would finish her prayer, and after saying “Amen,” having noticed that we were listening to her, would look up into our faces to see if we wanted anything.
This patience and devotion characterized her whole life. Often, when she was at play with her sister, who was the older by five years, when some little trouble would arise, she would take her sister by the hand and say: “Kittie, let’s tell Jesus.” Then bowing her little head, she would pour out her whole heart in prayer to her God, with the fervency that is always shown by a true Christian.
About three weeks after she was taken ill, her little body was paralyzed, and drawn all out of shape it seemed. Then in a few days her little limbs were so we could almost straighten them. What suffering she endured all that time, no one knows but those who were with her.
May 25th, which was Tuesday, while suffering terribly, she said: “Mamma, play and sing.” I took the guitar, and without stopping to think what to sing, began that beautiful song in the Gospel Hymns: “Nearer my home, today, than I have been before.” I could praise God just then, for I was filled with His Spirit. She lay there, looking at me with her little blue eyes, and trying in her weak voice to help me. At last, she seemed soothed by the music. But we knew that Jesus, in His infinite love, had quieted her for the time, because we were willing to submit to His will. We had said all the time: “Lord, not my will, but thine.”
She rested quite well until about three o’clock in the afternoon; then suddenly she spoke, and her voice sounded suite strong as she said: “O mamma, see those people, how funny they look! They look like poles.” She was lying so that she could look out of the window, and as she spoke her eyes seemed to rest on some object there. Then she spoke louder: “O mamma, come and see the little children! I never saw so many in my life.” I sat down on the front of the bed and said: “Jennie, is there any there that you know?” She looked them over so earnestly, then said: “No, not one.” I asked her how they looked. She said: “Mamma, every one has a gold crown on its head, and they are all dressed in white.” I thought that Jesus was coming for her then. After telling me that there were none there that she knew, she sank back on the pillows as though exhausted. But in a few moments, she raised up again and said: “O mamma, hear that music! Did you ever hear such grand music? Now, do not shut the windows tonight, will you?” I told her that I would not.
The next morning, she called Kittie into the room and said: “Kittie, I want to tell you what I saw last night. She then proceeded to tell her the same as she had told me the evening before. Then she said, “Now, Kittie, you will forgive me for ever being cross to you, won’t you?” Kittie answered: “Little darling, you have never been cross to me. Will you forgive me, sister, for being cross to you?" “Darling sister," said she, “that is all right.”
Thursday night she was paralyzed in her left side, so that she had no use of it. Friday all day she lay unconscious, and that night the same. Saturday, about ten o’clock, she commenced to try and whisper. We could hear her say:
“Papa, mamma.” We tried to understand her, but at first could not. She kept whispering plainer, and finally we heard her say: “Take - me - upstairs. I - want - to - lie - on - my - own - bed - once - more.” But of course we could not move her. Suddenly she said aloud: “I am going to die; kiss me quick, mamma.” I bent down and kissed her, and she looked so wretched. I said: “Jennie, you will not have to go alone; Jesus will take you.” She answered: “I know it. I wish that He would come this minute. Kiss me again, mamma.”
I did so; then she wished us to sing. Again, without giving one thought, I commenced singing the same words that I sang the Tuesday before. She raised her right hand arm’s length, and began to wave it and bow her head. Oh! She was so happy. Then she said: “Play.” They brought the guitar, and she continued to wave her little hand, while I played and sang the whole piece. One of her aunts, standing near the bed, took hold of her hand to stop it, but it moved just the same, and I said: "Ollie, let go of her hand, that is the Lord’s doings.” After I finished, she kissed her father, mother and sister, and bade them goodbye; then called four other, very dear friends, and told them goodbye after kissing them. She then called for a book and wanted the music teacher, who was present, to play and sing a piece which she dearly loved. Before she was sick, she would have little prayer meetings, and her sweet little face would shine with happiness.
She would say: “O mamma! How the Lord has blessed me. While the dear teacher was playing and singing her favorite, she was waving her little hand. We sang three or four other pieces around her bed. We all thought that Jesus would take her then. Oh, what joy; it was Heaven below. Jesus was there, and the room was filled with glory on account of His presence. Two of her aunts said that it seemed as though they were in Heaven.
She never spoke after that but would try to make us understand by motioning when she wanted anything. Sometimes it would take us a long time, but she would be so patient. She was ready and waiting. She had peace that the world cannot give, and, praise God! That the world cannot take away. The dear little one lived until the next Tuesday afternoon, and went to Jesus about three o’clock. That was the time she saw the vision the Tuesday before.
Tuesday morning before daylight she tried to tell me something. I said, “Sing?” She looked so happy and bowed her head. I began singing: “I am Jesus’ little lamb." She bowed her head again. In the forenoon she kept looking at her aunts Ollie and Belle, and pointing up. Oh! It meant so much. It seemed to me that she was saying, that it meant: “Meet me in Heaven.” Finally, she motioned for me to raise the window curtain. I did so, and she looked out of the window so eagerly, as though she was expecting to see the little children. Here the little blue eyes closed to open no more in this world, but in Heaven.
- Mrs. Libbie Jones
Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayer - 1893
Link to hear the tune of "One Day Nearer Home"
Link to hear the tune of "I am Jesus' little lamb" https://hymnary.org/hymn/CYBER/2709