Mourning in the midst of merriment is unsettling. But there it is. This year, death has colored the final weeks of December. Losing someone over the holidays challenges how I feel.
Maybe you can relate.
Death is an ever-present companion, silently following our every step, until it leads us through a fearsome door. But, Death’s persistent presence can be a good goad.
Remember Scrooge when the third spirit revealed where Scrooge’s life was ending? Scrooge did a one/eighty, and changed his habits. The mercy – the transformation of a miserly old grump that Dickens described — is that having another 24 hours is a gift of enormous benefit to you and me, even in our loss:
While you wake today, someone is breathing their last breath. Thank God for another day. Don’t waste it. (Anonymous Wisdom)
Even as it brings heartache, death brings hope – especially that it need not be the final word. Consider Christ, please. ( Hebrews 1 )
“In the midst of life we are in death.”
In the midst of life we are in death
of whom may we seek for succour,
but of thee, O Lord,
who for our sins
art justly displeased?
Yet, O Lord God most holy,
O Lord most mighty,
O holy and most merciful Saviour,
deliver us not into the bitter pains of eternal death (A poetic adaption from a Gregorian chant from the Book of Common Prayer.)
“Jesus is not a metaphor. He is real. This all happened . . . He is a Light for us when all other lights go out.” ― Timothy J. Keller, Hidden Christmas: The Surprising Truth Behind the Birth of Christ