Saturday, February 26, 2011

Are you afraid to die?

I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog lately.  We lost Aunt Dorothy just over two weeks ago.  Aunt Dorothy was more like my mother-in-law than an aunt.  My husband’s mother died before we were married and so I never really had a mother-in-law.  Aunt Dorothy was who filled that role in my life.

It’s hard to lose a loved one.  We miss her dearly. She was a Christian and so we mentally know that she is in a better place.  It is that human part of us that misses her that makes it hard. 

For the Christian who dies, it is a wonderful thing. It is to be with Jesus.  It is the end of the race, achieving the goal we have been living here for.  Jesus told the thief on the cross “Today you shall be with me in paradise".”  (Luke 23:43)  Paul said that he desired to depart this life and be with Christ (Philippians 1:23).  He said that would be far better.

In 2 Corinthians 5:8, Paul writes that “to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.”  This refers to being in the presence of the Lord. 

It is important for each of us to come to grips with our own mortality.  I have really been thinking about this a lot lately.  Perhaps because I am approaching 50 years old and so I know that I have more years behind me than ahead of me.  I don’t think I am afraid of being dead.  The process of dying can be a little scary.  Also, I worry about the people I would leave behind.  People who need me.  I think that was what Pail was referring to in Philippians chapter 1. 

Death is a part of life.  From the moment you are born, you are on a path that leads to death.  It comes quicker for some than for others but all of us will reach that end sometime. The best thing we can do is prepare for our death by accepting Christ.  Everyone dies and there are only two choices at that moment…. eternity in heaven or eternity in hell.  What you do now determines what happens then.  I have chosen to place my faith in Christ.  So did Aunt Dorothy.

Grief is painful.  Jesus grieved.  I don’t feel sorry for Aunt Dorothy.  She has finished her journey and earned her reward.  I feel sorry for Uncle Robert.  Going on without her will be very difficult.  I feel sorry for my husband.  It was like losing his mother all over again. 

I see death as a transition point.  It is the transition between serving the Lord here on earth and now serving Jesus in heaven.  I hope there is a big piano in heaven and Aunty Dorothy can once again use her musical gifts to play praise songs for the King of Kings.



Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Listen to the kid

My daughter is a junior in high school and is beginning to look at colleges.  We’ve been looking at state schools.  She wants to study biology.  She will probably get a teaching degree.  She told me last week that she thinks a Christian college would be a good idea.  I immediately thought about cost.  I don’t know how we will afford the tuition at a Christian college. 

So I asked the obvious question – Why do you think a Christian college would be the best?  Keep in mind that we’ve been paying tuition for Christian schools since she was in kindergarten.  She thought of something that I never thought of.  She said she knows that studying biology means she will have to study evolution.  She doesn’t want to go to a college that will make her compromise her faith in creation just to pass a test.  Pretty good reasoning for a 17 year old!

If Christians were more concerned about staying away from things that would make them compromise their faith and beliefs, I think we’d all have a better reputation in society.  One of the major problems that exist today is that Christians don’t look or speak differently than the world around them.  They don’t take a stand on the issues.  They are willing to do or say whatever is necessary in order not to cause a problem. 

My kid continues to amaze me with her faith.  I can’t thank God enough for her.