Wednesday, September 02, 2009
Through the Son
Yesterday, a man in our building died while riding his bicycle to work. Today, he was buried. It’s a reminder to me of how fragile we are and the simple fact that we are all perishing. Some of us will have eternal life in Christ because we have chosen to follow him, while others will not.
I can’t help but wonder what effect death has on our lives. Growing up in California, I feel as though I was shielded from death in a way. Of course I attended the occasional funeral of deceased relatives, but with limited exposure to death. Death was something associated with funeral homes and cemeteries. I suspect this is the case for the average American as well. Does this lead us to forget or at least not think about our momentary existence in this world?
In Ukraine, death is part of life. There is little attempt to hide or disguise it. Funerals generally take place at home with the help of friends, family, and neighbors. If you live in an apartment building, you can’t avoid being a part of or at least seeing a funeral every couple of months or so. Does this constant reminder of mortality cause people to examine eternity more closely or simply become numb to it? I don’t know, but I do know that I am more driven than ever to make known to the person I pass every day on the stairs that salvation comes from only one source, Jesus Christ.
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." -John 14:6
For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. -John 6:40
A friend of mine, Jeremy Foster, recently wrote this on his blog about death.
"Just a thought with this: oftentimes when a Christian dies, people say something to the extent that the person has gone to a better place. "A better place"? I appreciate the sentiment, but in reality, that is possibly/probably the greatest understatement in the universe. In all actuality, there is no better place anywhere. For the believer in Jesus, earth is the closest thing we'll ever have to hell. For the non-believer on the other hand, earth is the closest thing they'll ever have to heaven."