"Life is but a Breath"
The horrific events of this past Friday seem to have been the focal point of most conversations and Facebook postings over the weekend. It’s so difficult to understand. We painfully grieve for the families involved and can’t begin to comprehend what they must be experiencing. Who would want to? And what is it with the name “Sandy” lately? Please call me “Jo” from now on.
Whenever there have been brutal acts of this sort, or I lose a friend or relative to death, I can’t help but ponder on this inevitable state we will all face some day. One thing I know it does; it quickly puts my life into alignment, my priorities in order. We begin to appreciate the family and friends nearest to our heart when we see how quickly a life can be taken.
We have a very selfish attitude towards death. We aren’t ready to leave yet – we still have things to do. We don’t want to lose our loved ones – the pain would be unbearable.
God has a different perspective on death. As a Christian, this world is not our home – heaven is. We are just passing through to fulfill whatever plan God has for our life. If we don’t believe in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we aren’t promised eternity in heaven. Many believe that this is it. Once we die – we’re finished. Death is devastating to these people!
I, on the other hand, look forward to the pearly gates and the promises that come with it. (Of course, I still feel like I haven’t fulfilled God’s plan for me yet, so I’d prefer some more time here on Earth.) Who could resist the ideas of singing with the angels, no more pain, no more tears, and coming face-to-face with Jesus Himself?
John 5:24 – “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.”
Our lives on Earth are a miniscule part of our eternal life.
Psalm 39: 4, 5 – “Show me, O Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath.”
As I grow older, time seems to go faster and faster. A year can seem like a blink of an eye. That’s why it is so important to appreciate what we have and to focus on our mission here on Earth. Our mission will always have to do with people. We are sent here for one another, not for jobs, money, vacations, happiness, etc. The death of people around us seems to put our lives into perspective.
I personally believe that this is only the beginning of these “troubled times.” If we are truly facing the end times, we are now in a state of preparation. This is how our world looks when we take God out of it. As painful as living here may be, we need to stand up with our beliefs and get stronger. We need to get ourselves ready, emotionally and spiritually, for what may come. We need to band together with other Christians to prepare for the war against us.
(On a happier note, we know the end of the story here! Jesus will rule over this world, and all evil will be gone!)
I know that God is still in control, and I don’t want to miss whatever part He has for me to play because I’m paralyzed by fear and uncertainty.
Ephesians 6:12 – “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
To me, there’s nothing to be afraid of in death, except leaving my family behind when I go to heaven. For now, it’s my duty to make sure that they will join me there some day – them and every other person that I might have the privilege of touching with my life here on Earth.
I don’t know why all those people had to die last Friday. I do know that the children are all dancing in heaven – hopefully along with the adults. We don’t know what future God may have saved them from by taking them home. We do know that God works for the good of those who love Him. (Rom 8:28). We may never personally know the good that can come out of this, but we will, no doubt, hear some wonderful stories.
As for the parents, we need to continue to pray for their peace as they deal with the untimely loss of their children.