November 17, 2017
Precious (important and no light matter) in the sight of the Lord is the death of His godly ones. (Psalm 116:15 Amplified)
We view death from the darkest side. To us, everything about it seems like an ending to the best of life. But nothing could be further from the truth.
... is from all sides. He sees the pain and the sense of loss. The grieving of loving family members and friends. And, He has promised a sufficient grace and undeniable comfort. Comfort with God is God ""coming alongside to lift the load."" It is not a mere arm around the shoulder, but the sustaining presence of the One we need the most.
But He sees more. The child He created and loved enough to send His Son to buy back is coming home! A celebration is prepared. Angels are sent—ministering spirits—to carry His precious child through the experience. He knows that His timing is perfect, and if we could sit beside Him, we would agree.
In fact, the Lord Himself walks the believer through the ""valley of the shadow of death."" He is literally there with His son or daughter and that's why David proclaimed that he would not fear ... for the Lord was with Him.
FOR THOSE BESIDE US
... the view is hard but needful. It reminds us of how deeply and wonderfully we really can love someone. It is painful, but precious nonetheless. We are soberly reminded of the brevity of life. Of the beauty of what one life can accomplish and mean to so many. Our souls are re-oriented to the eternal. Our minds lifted from the pettiness of the world around us. It is a common and needful exercise.
My mother's hospital room, where she lingered in a coma for seven weeks, became one of the most God-filled sanctuaries I have ever entered. Months later, as I visited someone in that same hospital room, the presence of God still hovered there. I would not have chosen those days, but I would not trade them.
AND FOR THOSE WHO ARE HEADING HOME
... there are a myriad of experiences, I am sure. I have not traveled this road, but I do know the promises of God. We open our eyes in heaven (“Today you will be with me in paradise,” Jesus said.) The pain is gone! The flesh that we wrangled so often, wrestling the twin residents of righteousness and unrighteousness, is now forever liberated into perfection. The devil and his minions who tempted and tormented us are nowhere to be found. Our minds explode in understanding as we ""know as we have been known.""
We are reunited with those we love who've gone before (what reunions we will have!) And we will discover that Moses and Noah, David and Paul are as close to us as those we knew on earth. They are our brothers.
And we will be greeted by our Elder Brother who went before us and made our eternity possible. We will be embraced by nail-scarred hands and our hearts will burst with joy!
For we are home. We will understand that this is what we have longed and searched for all of our days. Here our thirst is eternally quenched and our love is fully satisfied.
We will find our place in God’s eternal order, doing the things that we've longed to do. We will discover that we were uniquely created by God for our new adventures in heaven and our satisfaction will be perfect and unending.
And each moment and year that passes we will realize that our earthly life was a small porch on a mansion. A birthing room for eternity. We will see our past rightly and worship Him for His grace that carried us through a brief life and earthly sleep … and grace that brought us home. And we will see with perfect eyes what John Newton saw with eyes of faith:
“When we’ve been there ten thousand years; Bright, shining as the sun; We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we first begun!”
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