The Stark Reminder

I. DEATH IS A REALITY TO BE FACED

Hebrews 9:27–It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. John Newton, the man who wrote Amazing Grace said just before he departed this world: I am leaving the land of the dying and going to the land of the living. He was right: everywhere you look in this world you see death. Lou has left this world of death and is now in the land of the living.

II. LIFE IS SHORT

Job said:“How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble.

Moses said: Seventy years are given to us! Some even live to eighty. But even the best years are filled with pain and trouble; soon they disappear, and we fly away.

David said: “Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered—how fleeting my life is. My entire lifetime is just a moment to you; at best, each of us is but a breath.  We are merely moving shadows.”

James said: “What is your life? You are a [vapor] mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 

III. RELATIONS MATTER

I was 40 years old before the LORD revealed the truth to me: Relationships are always more valuable than riches. I’ve seen a lot of people put riches first and it leads to misery. John and Lou loved all three of you but now they are gone. If you want to honor them: keep loving each other.

IV. THIS WORLD CAN NOT FULFILL OUR NEEDS

I have lived on this earth for 70 years and I can tell you there is nothing in this world that will give you lasting satisfaction. Not one person under the sound of my voice is perfectly happy or at peace. There are many things that this world and the people in it cannot give you. God created us with needs and our greatest need is HIM. There is a J shaped hole in your inner being that only Jesus can fill.

V. PHYSICAL DEATH IS A PROMOTION

Paul said in Philippians 1:21–For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. I translate the word ‘gain’ promotion…for me to live is Christ and to die is a promotion. Lou got an infinite upgrade. Don’t feel sorry for Lou. Our sorrow and grief should be for ourselves. We don’t know what’s going to happen down here but Lou is safe in the arms of Jesus.

This present crisis and Lou’s departure should help us understand how vital a relationship with Jesus is…He loved you and He died for you.