The last month has been difficult. It’s been hard to watch a precious family go through the pain of losing their son. It has been hard to watch a group of young people grieving and mourning one who was so young and so full of life. We will never forget Dallas.
As we continue to minister to the family and friends I want to encourage you to keep several things in mind. One is that life is not guaranteed. We don’t know the day we will leave this world. We can’t afford to take for granted that we (or our loved ones) will “always” be here. Our day will come.
“You return mankind to the dust, saying, “Return, descendants of Adam.” For in Your sight a thousand years are like yesterday that passes by, like a few hours of the night.” (Psalm 90:3–4, HCSB)
Yet when you think about it the entire Bible is preparing us for eternity. The entire message of Scripture is that there is a place called heaven and that this life and this world is temporary and it will soon pass away. That doesn’t mean that we don’t grieve our loved one. We do. With everything that is within us we miss them. Yet we do not grieve as those who have no hope.
Instead we live and love and wait in confident expectation that one day we too will experience the wonder of life as it was truly meant to be. It’s a challenge. Because everything we have experienced and that we know is right here. We learn about heaven but we can’t see it. We don’t have pictures of it. We can’t go there for a visit.
Yet Scripture gives us the ability to see and to know. It’s called faith. Some will think believing in Jesus to be ridiculous. But to those who believe in Jesus Christ it means everything. He is our life. He is the One who helps us in every moment of loss and pain and hurt and anger and confusion. He is there. I can’t tell you how you will know He is there. You just have to trust and see. Ask Him to help you find your way.
“Teach us to number our days carefully so that we may develop wisdom in our hearts.” (Psalm 90:12, HCSB)
There are limited days for each of us. Find the reason that you are here and live your life to its fullest. Love the people God brings into your life. Live your days with all the joy and wonder and passion that He would intend. Give everyone around you the gift of seeing a genuine follower of Jesus – not perfect but really trying hard.
“Lord—how long? Turn and have compassion on Your servants. Satisfy us in the morning with Your faithful love so that we may shout with joy and be glad all our days. Make us rejoice for as many days as You have humbled us, for as many years as we have seen adversity. Let Your work be seen by Your servants, and Your splendor by their children. Let the favor of the Lord our God be on us; establish for us the work of our hands— establish the work of our hands!” (Psalm 90:13–17, HCSB)
In the end (umm, except there really isn’t an end) you will discover that your life was well lived in every moment you trusted Him, every time you served Him, every way that you glorified Him. And that is really what this life (and the next) is all about.
Grieving with you,
Bro. Tim Hobbs