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A Tribute To A Friend (a poem)

Updated on April 18, 2018
My Friend Elke Maney
My Friend Elke Maney

Honoring the passing of a friend

Isn't it interesting what God can do with the life of one obedient soul? A whole family, church, community, yes, the world is affected by the life of just one redeemed life given to God. This is a tribute to a woman that was to me a mother and in so many ways a mother to all her knew her. Her life was an example of what God could accomplish through someone that just said "yes" to Him. After she died of an inoperable cancerous brain tumor, we all had to grow up to try to stand in the gap she left among us. So we grew, some a little, some a lot when she left but the gap is still felt by everyone that knew her.

This is a tribute to my friend Elke Maney, always a part of Victory Baptist Church (now Victory Church), always a part of my heart, and always my friend and sister in the Lord.

Why do you sorrow, O my soul?

Why doth my life, not seem whole?

Do not leave me, I hear my heart scream

Yet my spirit knows, it's not as it seems,

I remind myself, of all the right things

Of the blessings and joys, that heaven brings

Yet that does little, to ease the pain

That blows in the wind, and falls in the rain,

When I see my brother, begin to smile

I want to stop him, for just a little while

A while longer, to remember her life

A woman, a hero, a wonderful wife,

A model for all, of a soldier strong

Whose quiet spirit, edified all,

And now I'm left, with this empty space

That comes from not seeing, her smiling face,

Or the tilt of her head, that I thought was so funny

Or hearing the words, "I'll pray for you honey"

So up till today, I've cried silent tears

The kind I was sure, that no one hears.

"So what changed?" my friend asked with puzzled look

And wondered how much, strength it took

To put away, such an awful pain

And to count my loss, as only gain,

So I said, "I suddenly realized today

That my friend, never really went away

It's like she went, into an upper room

And never was buried in a tomb

Like I discovered an attic, above the stair

Behind a door, that opens with prayer

And one day, when God says it's time

God will open that door, and I'll make my climb

And at the top of the stairs, with arms open wide

There is my sister, at the Lord's side

There she will be, with head tilted funny

And say, 'Bout time you got here, I missed you honey.

How could I be sad, since I found that stair

And the door, that opens wide with prayer?"

Then I saw my friend, have tears in his eyes

And on his face, a look of surprise,

"S'cuse me", he said, "Gotta go find that stair

And that door that opens, wide with prayer."

Elke Maney changed and affected so many lives. She cared about each soul she met and you knew when you talked to her that you saw her heart. Nothing phony, superficial or plastic about her. She ministered to her family, her church, at the prison and so many other ways that only God knows. I know that her fondest wish was to know her influence would help people see the Savior she so loved. So many people came to Jesus because she cared to share Him with them. So in her memory, because of her legacy, I do what she would have wanted on any page written of her- I offer the Savior to you.

If you do not know Jesus as personal Lord and Savior of your life it is very simple to reach out to Him. First, it is important to realize you are a sinner because Jesus came to earth to bleed and die for sinners. The Bible says "all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." If you believe that Jesus was the Son of God and that He was buried and in three days rose from the dead, you can cry out to Him to save you.

Pray this: Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner. I believe that You came to die to pay for my sins and to make me Your child. I believe that You were buried but in three days You rose from the dead. Lord please forgive me of my sin and save me. I turn from my sin and turn to You as the only way of salvation. Thank You for hearing me and saving me. I pray this in Jesus' holy name, Amen.


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    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      15 months ago from Rochester, New York

      Hi, Tam, I'm going to try to rewrite my comment to you a second time. For some reason, my comment to you disappeared. I hate that especially when the words seemed to be just the way I wanted them. I will never rewrite something the way I wrote it in the first place. Words never come back to me that way. hahaha! I guess I wasn't supposed to say whatever it was that I just said to you. So let me say that I am happy that this testimony about Elke blessed your heart. She was a very beautiful soul. Bob.

    • Tamarajo profile image


      15 months ago

      What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful life

      "her fondest wish was to know her influence would help people see the Savior she loved"

      She obviously succeeded that goal with her impression upon you.

      God bless you Bob!

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      3 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Thank you LL she was a mom to me for so many years. It just seems like yesterday that she was here but so much has changed since she has left. I so much look forward to speaking with her again in heaven. Nice to meet you LL. Bob.

    • LL Fugate profile image

      LL Fugate 

      3 years ago from Central Virginia

      Lovely poem.

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      6 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Jackie, we will always be her family and be extension, yours. We are all one in Christ so I want to extend an invitation to come up to this cold, cold place and visit family. Best wishes. Bob Smith.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I don't think I met many people at Victory. I am one of John Maney's daughters and we live in Alabama. I love how you have described her being upstairs. She definitely is not out of hearts or minds and it's wonderful to see proof of that, even being down here in AL.

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      6 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Debbie, I miss you too. I just don't see you enough. I certainly don't talk to you as much as I would like. I love Elke. You know me. I never have had much money for clothes. When I was married to Julie, money slipped right through our fingers. I kept very little clothes in the closet. Elke gave me a gift certificate for I believe, $200.00 to buy a suit to wear to church. I did and it lasted a little while. I always sought her out to get my hug and to hear her say, "I love you honey." I feel the same about you when I see you. I love you honey. In Christ, your brother, Bob.

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      6 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Jackie, do I know you, hon? I know you probably won't check back to see what I say here but I can't remember you. I am sorry if I forgot. I thank you so much for visiting I have so wanted to minister to my Maney family and extended family. I do miss her but I just keep telling myself she is just upstairs and she doesn't seem so far away. Much Christian love and blessings. Bob

    • profile image

      debbie french 

      6 years ago


      That was beautiful, thank you so much for that wonderful tribute to mommy,grandma,friend.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      This brought tears to my eyes. I can hear her saying "I miss you honey" One thing I always loved was how she used pet names. It made me feel so special. I'm thankful that my aunt's continue to do this. Thank you so much for putting this out here and even putting your feelings into words so we can all reminisce and share.

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      7 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Cocoa How are you? Thought about you the other day. I can't wait to see this wonderful lady again. Her presence helped to stabilize an entire church. When she died it rocked the place. It took a minute to recover. In some ways it never did. Some of her family had a hard time coming to my church again. Too many memories. All of them are serving God as far as I know but we all look forward to seeing Elke again. Bless you Cocoa

    • CoCoa_81 profile image


      7 years ago from Shreveport, Louisiana

      This is a lovely poem. I just love the way you worded your feelings.

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      7 years ago from Rochester, New York

      Lottie, your friendship makes me richer. This poem was written for a great God fearing lady named Elke Maney. She went home some years ago of brain cancer. She cared so much for the lost and did a jail ministry and helped so many people. She led literally hundreds and hundreds of people to Jesus. I can't wait to see her again. Brings a little tear to my eye thinking of her. Then again God's grace at your friendship makes me a little weepy too. Love you Lottie.

    • drpastorcarlotta profile image

      Pastor Dr. Carlotta Boles 

      7 years ago from BREAKOUT MINISTRIES, INC. KC

      Beautiful Hub! I am so glad I am your friend! I feel very honored! AMEN!

    • Hannah Ministries profile image

      Hannah Ministries 

      8 years ago

      Hallo Bob,

      What a WONDERFULL poem!!!! i love it! And it says so exactly what one feels. Is this your wife? or a friend?

      My husband died in 95. We were just 3 years married and I almost died with him. Until i found 'that door'.

      I hope to write a book about this one day.

      And yes i received your email and I think I followed the lord's guidance that day that I klikt the "follow nobody''s link. I will link your poem to my facebook. ( I dont have a cool sister, so I keep it simple :) Bye

    • no body profile imageAUTHOR

      Robert E Smith 

      9 years ago from Rochester, New York

      i visited your site and found it very informative, interesting.


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