Tuesday, April 19, 2011

By No Means the End: Reflections on Loss

"End?  No, the journey doesn't end here.  Death is just another path...One we all must take.  The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass...And then you see it...White shores...and beyond, a far green country under a swift sunrise."

Sunday night our Sister in Christ, Melanie Sweenie, was relieved of her suffering and taken home to her savior.  It's a hard thing for those of us who are left behind, harder still for her two young sons and her husband, but we can take comfort in knowing that her work was finished.  Right now, she is getting to look upon the face of the savior with perfect vision and hear the words "well done good and faithful servant."  This was no surprise to Him who knows the number of our days and in that I pray we can all find comfort in this time.  God did not look down on Melanie, gasp, and think, "whoops, wasn't paying attention there", rather He was the one calling her home, drawing her into eternal rest.  He is also the One who will comfort her family, and use this to grown and strengthen them as He uses their local church to gather around them.

While we mourn with those who mourn (Romans 12:15), we continue to rejoice that death, eternal death, has been concurred, and say along with Paul, "'O death, where is your victory?  O death, where is your sting?'  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."  1 Corinthians 15:55-57  By the sacrifice of Christ Jesus, Melanie, along with all who believe on Him, is free from the penalty of sin and now she is completely free from its oppression (2 Corinthians 5:21).  May we take hope in this, no matter the tragedies we experience in this life.

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