Celebrating Death

Posted by : Brian | On : January 27, 2014

In my recent post “Are you pro-life? Are you sure?”, I wrote all about how we need to celebrate life. In fact, in the summarizing paragraph I wrote:

“Be pro-life. Be for life. Celebrate life. ALL LIFE.”

So now I’m doing a different post and titling it “Celebrating Death.” Interesting…

At the beginning of the year, my grandfather passed away at the age of 79. He was in very poor health and for the last five or six years, every Christmas season was “probably our last Christmas with Grandpa.” Turns out that it became true for Christmas 2013. At our annual family Christmas gathering, my grandparents were unable to make it because of his health, so we went to visit them at their home after the party. It was clear that Grandpa was not doing well and my first comment to Keri when we got the car was “He needs to go.”

10 days later, he did just that. In peace. Surrounded by his family.

The next two weeks consisted of preparing for the funeral and reminiscing about Grandpa’s life – much of which I knew nothing about. I got to go through old pictures with my mom and grandma and listen to stories about him as a child, as a worker, as a husband, and as a father. The stories were not told with frowns and tears, but with smiles and laughter.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? – 1 Corinthians 15:55

To Death: Seriously, though. Answer the question. What power can you possibly possess over Christians? We have hope in this life as well as hope in eternal life. A physical death can only end one life to bring us into eternal life.

To the reader: I have to admit, the title of this post is false. It was a ploy to get you to click on it. Sorry. We do not celebrate death. We celebrate life. We celebrate life on earth, and we celebrate life after death.

And that’s exactly what we did at Grandpa’s graveside service as well as his funeral. We rejoiced in his life here on earth and the memories that we all had with him. More importantly, we celebrated and continue to celebrate his eternal life spent in the presence of God.

Love you Papa. See you soon.

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