We live in a culture where we see death often but experience it rarely.
Movies, video games, cartoons, news stories all flash images of death across the screen so frequently that most of us either ignore them or they register only as numbers, not as human beings.
Of course many of the images are manufactured-the actors don’t REALLY die, the characters in video games are not real-but how often do we wait for a news report to tell us how many AMERICANS died in a plane crash or terror attack?
As if only those affiliated in some way with our own heritage “count”.
But when death comes knocking at your own door, walks in and settles down, that changes everything.
I can no longer sit and consume death like a meal, meant to feed my appetite for entertainment.
And every single time I hear a report listing casualties I think of the families ripped apart by the absence of a life they loved.
Death is the enemy.
When Satan tempted Adam and Eve he said, “You shall not surely die.”
He was wrong.
A single sin ushered in all kinds of sorrow and woe and the ultimate sadness was death. It meant separation from breath and life, separation from those we love and, without the atoning blood of Christ, separation from God in eternity.
My ninety-nine-year-old aunt died this week. She lived a long, useful and fairly healthy life (until the last couple of years).
You’d think that in light of my own son dying at only twenty-three I’d be more OK with her leaving this life and moving to Heaven.
But I’m not.
Somehow her death-more than all the other souls I’ve known and loved that have left us since Dom ran ahead-has knocked me to my knees.
Maybe it was how hard and how long she fought against our common enemy.
Maybe it was just the time of year.
I don’t know.
But she reminded me again that death is always sad.
And that Jesus is the only One Who can save us from death’s power.