Archive for April 2011

A reflection on death

April 1, 2011

Death occurred in our little church community this week.  It has been heartbreaking but I have also never known such a theologically truthful response to death in my life and it has brought genuine hope in the midst of sadness.  I am learning a lot as I live in a church that on weeks like this actually does a pretty good job at being the church.  One of the things I’ve reflected on in this sad situation is how important and freeing it is to be sad about the right things.  In the past when I’ve experienced situations of death one of the things that I feel sad over is thinking about the person’s future being ‘robbed’ from them.  I think about all the things they’ll never get to do… perhaps things like get married, have kids, travel, fulfil their potential as a genius… that kind of stuff.  I think aw it’s sad that he’ll never know that… but it occurred to me this week that when a Christian dies that is the stupidest thing i could ever think.  Anything I could wish for them in this life is like dry dust compared to the future they have now been ushered into.  So glorious nothing we could imagine in this life comes close to it.  He has not been ‘robbed’ of his future he has finally entered it.

So we may still weep in the moments we wish we could be near that person, we may still weep at the reality of never seeing him again, we may still weep for his family and friends in their heartache… but we will not be sad for him, for he knows a life that I am jealous of.

Scripture says it better:

“For to me, to life is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labour for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, WHICH IS BETTER BY FAR; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body…”