It seems that our lives are constantly coming into contact with death and whenever they do it is never convenient. Plans that have been made suddenly cease, trips that have been planned suddenly seem unimportant. All of those things on your “to-do” list can wait a little longer while we focus upon this seeming tragedy in our lives.
Yes, I said, “seeming tragedy.” Death is always a loss, many times it is a surprise, but it is not always a tragic thing when it happens. You know that some folks are ready to face death; they have prepared themselves spiritually and are ready to go and be embraced by their God.
I have been involved in somewhere around 100 funerals in my preaching career, (and I realize that is not a lot compared to some ministers), but it is enough to learn some things about people. The simple truth is that unless it is an immediate family member, death is more of an inconvenience than anything. It disrupts their plans. It’s not that they are not truly concerned and sorrowful, but the truth is that often the ones involved in the death are soon forgotten. Simply because in life, there are goals to meet, plans to complete, things to do… death is inconvenient.
There is actually a record in the bible of someone who felt that way. In Luke 12:16-21 Jesus tells us about it: “And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”
I believe that the man in this story found death to be very inconvenient to say the least. He had his plans made, his future planned out, his retirement prepared and death intervened. What about you? If you knew that you would be facing death soon, would your priorities suddenly change? Would your lists and your plans really matter any more? I would think that for many things would change a great deal. We don’t like to be reminded of it, but death is a reality and it is the one thing we will never escape in life. All you can do is prepare in advance for that which is coming to you at sometime whether it is convenient or not.
An old hymn asks, “Are you ready, are you ready, are you ready for the judgment day?” Are you?
Russ Lawson is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with his column Today’s Challenges. He is semi-retired and an elder at the Mid-County Church of Christ. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.