Octavius Winslow (1808-1878) was a non-conformist minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He wrote;
“THERE is approaching a period—ah, how it speeds!—that will be the most solemn and severe, yet the sweetest and truest test of the sustaining, soothing power of Christ’s preciousness in the experience of His saints: the last sickness and the closing scene of life.
Imagine that moment to have arrived. All of earth’s attraction ceases, all of creature-succor fails.
Everything is failing— heart and strength failing, mental power failing, medical skill failing, human affection and sympathy failing. The film of death is on the eye, and the invisible realities of the spirit-world are unveiling to the mental view.
Bending over you, the loved one who has accompanied you to the margin of the cold river asks a sign. You are too weak to conceive a thought, too low to breathe a word, too absorbed to bestow a responsive glance. You cannot now [declare] your faith in an elaborate creed, and you have no profound experience, ecstatic emotions, or heavenly visions to describe.
One brief, but all-emphatic, all-expressive sentence embodies the amount of all that you now know, believe, and feel. It is the profession of your faith, the sum of your experience, the ground of your hope—“Christ is precious to my soul!”
Enough! The dying Christian can give and the inquiring friend can wish no more. Dearest Saviour, be Thou close to me in that solemn moment! Tread the valley by my side, pillow my [faint, weary] head upon Thy bosom, speak these words of heart-cheer to my struggling, panting, departing soul, “Fear thou not; for I am with thee” (Isa 41:10)—then, it will be happiness for me to die. Death will have no venom, the grave no gloom, eternity no dread. And, from the measured experience of Thy preciousness on earth, I shall pass in triumph through the shadowy portal into the full sunshine and perfect realization and eternal enjoyment of all that faith believed and love desired and hope expected of Thy full orbed glory and preciousness in heaven. “In thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Psalm 16:11).”