Death is utterly ugly, horrible, dark, disgusting, revolting, nauseating, awful, horrific, shocking…..
I found myself saying a few months ago, death is beautiful, so why an earth would I say that? I find I live in the world of paradox’s.
I did not want to look at Mike, lying there dead. I had done all I was told by the lady on the end of the phone and once the Paramedics came, I left the room. I only went back in when the police arrived and then again briefly before he was taken away. Kathy and Laura were able to sit with him and even stroke his head. I could not look at him, not like that. I actually have a photo of him asleep in the car which is not dissimilar to the look on his face when I found him. I will not delete it but it’s not my favorite to look at any more!
When Akila came back from being overseas and after Mike was released from the Post Morton we went to see Mike at the funeral home, 5 days later. During those 5 days I had started the process of trying to understand this event with eyes of faith as well as deal with the human tragedy. For a person who has “believed on the name of the LORD Jesus”, death is beautiful. For those who are left behind it is all the words above. But that is not the point I want to make.
I went to funeral home knowing I could look at Mike because of the brilliance of the total complete work of the Cross. When I in my mind’s eye put the cross over death, and it’s not a small cross, it’s a massive all-sufficient one, then I can look at Mike,
54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” 55 “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” 1 Cor 15 v 55-54
I can now look at Mike and know that Mike is alive in Christ, so I can look death in the face and see life. So I can live at peace with death if it has been a “buy back” by the Cross of Christ. It’s beautiful to those who are “in Christ” but its horrendous outside of that.
Now think of all our sin, our attitudes, behaviour etc. Oh my giddy aunt, how horrendous. Just take the average family and think of all the “sins” of our ego centric behaviour and put them on a piece of white paper, add to them the emotions and feelings of the person who was “sinned” against. Now you have a very ugly piece of paper. That is all living in the house with you! But here is the awesome brilliance of the Father’s Love. All that can be covered like the white snow we have at the moment if we surrender and apply in our lives, in our families the all-sufficient work of the Cross. Death looses its sting. God is in the business of “buy back”, “exchanging”, “taking what we broke and He fixes it”.
One further point, you do not leave a dead body in the house! When you have dealt with those “sins” or the emotions and hurt if you were the one sinnned against, then you must bury them. What does that mean on a practical level. Well I believe it means you do what Paul says ” Phil 3:13 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,
New Every Morning are His Mercies