Lord, the one you love is sick. John 11:3 NIV
Cancer. Bad news. One week ago today I heard those words about a dear friend. Today I sit on an airplane flying home for her funeral. She was only 52. She was only sick for a few weeks. How? Why? Questions we will never know the answer to this side of heaven. Questions I hope I will not care about on the other side of heaven.
Weather has been a nightmare. Re-routing airplane trips around the snowpocalypse has left me frazzled and worried I'll miss the visitation and funeral. Worried I'll miss the grieving and remembering not just with her family, but also with my own family. We will miss her dearly and grieve heavily for her surviving family.
Death is a reminder that this life and this earth are temporary. We are not designed to be here forever. I just wish we were here long enough. Long enough to see children grow up, graduate college, get married, have grandbabies. And then see all of our grandbabies do the same. Long enough to retire and have lazy days - or busy days - with our spouses. Long enough . . . we just need to live long enough.
I find myself following "long enough" with "if only." If only we knew the number of our days, would we live differently? Would we love people more or squander relationships because we have plenty of time left on the clock?
I think of how much I love my friend. How much more and differently I love my husband and my child. And, then how much Jesus loves me. Jesus is the perfect example of love. I used to see Jesus as this stoic example of love. The older I get and the more life I live, the more I can see the passionate Jesus. The man who hugged his disciples; the man who cried with his friends; the man who suffered for me and you. God in heaven loves each of us passionately. He hugs and weeps with us. He holds us as we sob quietly or shout in anger.
If I quiet my soul I can hear Jesus whisper, "You will be on earth until you've completed what I have planned for your life. I've placed you right where you need to be, doing just what I have designed for you." If I listen and obey, I know that "long enough" and "if only" are worldly concerns, not Godly concerns. I still have those questions and perhaps I will for a long time to come.
As the plane descends over the newly fallen snow, I give thanks for the life and love of my friend and most of all for the life, death, resurrection, and love of my Savior. God's peace I leave with you.
Dig Deeper |
Action Item |
Call, write, text or email a friend from your youth. Reconnect or enrich a relationship that God established for you in your past.
Dear Loving Heavenly Father, please bring comfort to those who have lost loved ones. Please help them to understand there is no right or wrong way to grieve. Lord God, help us to accept the comfort You have for each of us and to know that Your love is perfect. Amen
Join Us |
Gather with us by sharing your "Action Item" or "Prayer" by clicking on the Comment link at the top of the post.