There are many normal days that come and go with little or no earth shattering events. Day after day the world turns and we very rarely even notice who we pass by. We are eighteen days into a new year, 2018 is wide open and yet today I am confronted with life and death within hours of each other.
The book of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 tells us ….
To every thing there is a season,
and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate;
A time of war, and a time of peace.
I am especially impressed today concerning…A time to be born, a time to die. Today I visited a beautiful baby girl that was born this morning then tonight I visited a saint of God, a follower of Christ, a beautiful woman who lived a good long life who now has received her reward. The beginning of one life and the “ending” of another seems profound to my inquisitive mind.
I am not in any way questioning God, I get the process, each of us is given one life to live but it seems unusual when this “swap” occurs within hours of each other. It makes me wonder if it’s not a sort of swap out….it would make sense in my feeble logic. I do think the Lord has a system, he knows what’s going on at any given time. He’s tricky that way… like how your Mom always knows what you did before you tell her… God and our Mom are on the same wave length, so aggravating!… until you get to be the Mom.. then it’s fun!
Life is amazing, new babies give us hope for a future but so does the death of a follower of Christ, the future is greater than any world we could ever imagine and the profound vision of that future can be seen in the face of those newborn babies…..So much promise of a long life. God is more than we can imagine and it is an honor to be trusted with helping with both births and deaths. After having my own brood of four, overwhelmed with the blessing and pressure to be a good mother… or at least not kill them on accident, it wasn’t until my granddaughter was born and I was up close and personal to the blessed event, did I comprehend the magic of it all. That passage to life and the passage from death to new life are equally astonishing. The latter I haven’t experienced as of yet obvious by my typing…but the face of the ones that have passed are always peaceful.
Recently, Kathie Lee Gifford wrote a song about Jesus that is about her husband Frank Gifford. She noted that when he passed he was looking up as if he saw the Lord coming for him, she said he seemed happy looking up toward heaven. When I heard her story I was touched then the next Sunday my preacherman preached about the martyr Stephen and when he was stoned to death he was looking up toward heaven…..
Acts 7:54-60 (NKJV)
54 When they heard these things they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed at him with their teeth. 55 But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, 56 and said, “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!”
I nearly fell out of my pew!!Kathie Lee was right….it was real the way she felt Frank looked! The song she wrote was beautiful and it is comforting knowing that heaven is something to look forward to, unlike those sweet babies who have to squirm and squeeze through that impossible pathway to life.. then they get prodded and bathed and swaddled(well that’s fun) and shots and other horrible wallowing just to survive this thing called life!
We serve a mighty God and He is there for the whole thing, from life to death and all the cool stuff in between, there are many beginnings and endings and I figure as long as I do all I can to help a few people along the way then maybe I can please God.
Before then there will be a lot of time to dance and mourn and plant; a time to keep silent and a time to speak ( I struggle with those two!) Anyhow I look forward to what comes next and always looking up! Maranatha!