Whether it’s the looming chore of 1040 forms and schedule C’s hanging over my head, or the very recent passing of a much admired man of God, (and the 15th anniversary of the death of the young man who played Danny Zuko to my Sandy in a highschool production of “Grease”), I’ve been thinking a lot about the “unavoidables” lately…
And for those of you wondering, Yes, my word choice is very intentional because there is nothing NATURAL about death! When I was 7 I lost my last two grandparents within a month of each other, and then when I was 9, I lost one of my closest friends to leukemia. (she was the same age as me) I didn’t understand, and I never got over it.
During my teen years and into college I lost a dear aunt to cancer, and two beautiful friends to the tragedy of suicide… I struggled to understand their deaths, and I never got over that either.
AIDS took far too many friends; cancer ravaged bodies, and alzheimer’s robbed memories, minds, dignity, and even the personalities of people I loved, and I can’t get over it. Furthermore, I don’t think we’re supposed to…
Yes, we go on… of course. Those of us who have hope in heaven are comforted by the surety of reunions in the future, but we never get over it!!!
See death isn’t natural to us, because it was never a part of God’s plan for us! Think about it… the tree of LIFE was in the center of the garden. God planned for Adam and Eve to reign over the earth by naming, not killing the animals. With the fall of man came all kinds of death (physical, emotional, and spiritual) brought on by fear, doubts, shame, and the like, and we have struggled with it ever since. Today our movies, books, tv, and computer games are littered with death, murder, autopsies… ANYTHING to try and gain control over this monstrous intruder. How many wars will it take for us to de-sensitize ourselves to it?
We are not comfortable cozying up to this enemy, and along the way we’ve realized even our dreams have been killed off too. But one day, death will be done for good. This by the way, is the bigger promise of Easter. ( I know there are many of you who would much rather talk about candy & egg hunts and a certain bunny when this topic comes up, vs looking at a bloody cross and an empty tomb, but seriously, without this hope, I wouldn’t know how to go on…) Death, any death, even “expected” after a long life or a wasting disease, will not ever be a natural part of life!!! Jesus said it is the enemy that comes to steal, and kill, and destroy, but that He came that we might have LIFE, life to the fullest!! (John 10:10)
So, Death, you might currently be “unavoidable” on this broken planet but we will win the battle. As for me, I may have to get back on task finishing up this year’s taxes, but I will continue to choose love, and life, and hope, and joy in whatever time I have left. I will live every moment to the fullest and one day celebrate the complete absence of this sickening, “unnatural” condition. And only then will I get over you!!