The scripture readings are Psalm 116-118 and 1 Thessalonians 4.
My grandmother had fought cancer for many years. It was almost a cycle. Doctors would find the cancer, she had surgery, they believed she was cured of cancer, and then more cancer was found. Unfortunately, one cold winter day she fell on her way to her car in the driveway. This broken hip started a chain of events that would move her from the hospital to a nursing home where the cancer seized its opportunity to take her life.
I remember being at her visitation. My family, cousins, aunts, and uncles all welcomed people to view grandma’s body. After hours of saying “Thank you for coming,” and “Yes, I do look like my dad,” to vague distant relatives, the whole family viewed the body before leaving for the night. At this point an older cousin of mine fell apart. She couldn’t be comforted. She was in distress over the situation. Now don’t take this next part wrong. I was deeply saddened by the loss of my grandma. I shed tears albeit not in public but I did grieve. However, I must say that I do have a logical nature and I had trouble relating with her great emotional outbreak. I think the reason being was that I was as sure as the sky is blue that grandma was in Heaven. Grandma finally wasn’t in pain or suffering. She was well and with our Heavenly Father that cares deeply for her. That didn’t seem sad to me. It seemed more sad to me that I couldn’t see her anymore.
I thought of the above situation while I read this portion of 1 Thessalonians 4:
And now, brothers and sisters, I want you to know what will happen to the Christians who have died so you will not be full of sorrow like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus comes, God will bring back with Jesus all the Christians who have died. I can tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not rise to meet him ahead of those who are in their graves. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the call of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, all the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air and remain with him forever. So comfort and encourage each other with these words.
What are your thoughts on death and the grieving process? Have you had a difficult time with losing someone? What did that look like? Has your faith in Christ ever helped you through the situation of losing a loved one? What was that like.