In 2009 my pastor Rich Nathan gave a message on the challenge of death. He said death is three things to us: a teacher, an enemy, and gain. It is a teacher because it is the great editor in our lives, helping us to see truly what is most important in this life. It is an enemy because it is a result of our broken relationship with God. We are a wounded broken planet; death is a cancerous sore that breaks God’s heart. It is gain because through the death and resurrection of Jesus death does not have the final say in the matter. When we trust Jesus we see clearly that His love is stronger than death. We will be able to sing with tears in our eyes:
“Be still, my soul, the hour is hastening on
When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul, when change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.”
Go sit in a quiet room for 10 minutes, close your eyes, and meditate on your own death. What relationships do you need to reconcile? To whom do you need to say “I love you,” or “I forgive you?” What do you need to get right with God?
After such meditation, this woman has just opened her eyes and written hundreds of letters, folded into little boats. Held together by God’s spendthrift grace, they will find their way home.
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