And then something happens that reminds us of how mortal we all are.
When an elderly person dies, we say things like “they lived a long life”, which gives us comfort. When a young person dies, there’s anguish because “they were so young and had their entire lives ahead of them”. There’s a sense of threat to our own lives, from being reminded that death does not come at a perfect time, nor age. We are forced to reflect on how short and precious life is (and life is short, at any age, considering that we were never meant to die in the first place (Genesis)).
That moment of reflection came to me recently. In that moment, I had this recurring thought that “the experience of death is for the living”. I remember hearing that in a Psychology of Death and Dying course. What it means is, we experience the grief and the mourning. We try to make sense of things, and we learn from it. These truths brought me to the following scripture:
Better to spend your time at funerals than at parties. After all, everyone dies–so the living should take this to heart. – Ecclesiastes 7:2 (NLT)
We don’t think about our mortality while partying, or going about our daily lives. Everything is straight then. When faced with death however, or at a funeral based on this scripture, we get into deep thought and discussions about life. We talk about the making of a meaningful life, our current paths, changes that could be made, and we contemplate our future.
I took my own thoughts to God. I talked to Him about the way I’m living. I wanted to let Him know that I’m grateful and trying to live in a way that pleases Him. I asked Him to help me to live. Teach me, even. I have already been given life through Christ, but I need Him to help me to walk in it. It’s only through abiding in Christ, that I am able to live a meaningful life. This involves staying in my word and having one-on-one time with God. That is how true transformation, wisdom, and guidance for living is acquired. I need Him for this. We all do.
So teach us to number our days,
That we may gain a heart of wisdom. – Psalm 90:12 (NKJV)
My prayer is that we all examine ourselves and be honest about our current condition. That we not only seek wisdom, but answer Her when she calls out to us. That we would choose Christ and His way in every situation. And not take for granted the moments and purpose we have been given. I pray that if we ever drift, or stumble, that we would go right back to Him. I pray that we all serve others, be fruitful, and be useful parts of the body of Christ, trusting and obeying Him. I pray that we give ourselves and all that is within us over to God.
Please, live. Be who God has called you to be. Do as He has called you to do. Life is short and death is real. We will all face that for ourselves some day. I want us all to make the most of our time here on Earth. In this was, when we appear before God, we will get a “well done”, be crowned with a crown of many jewels, and lay it at Jesus’ feet.