2 In living

Life and Death

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On Friday we found ourselves out in small-town Wyoming, celebrating and remembering the life of Brian’s Uncle Randy. It’s a strange thing to attend a funeral on Good Friday—especially a Christian one. We read scripture and sang hymns that Uncle Randy had loved dearly, and it was beautiful and tragic all at once.

At the gravesite, we had an intimate time of saying goodbye alongside family, and I couldn’t help but look at Uncle Randy’s wife and mother and feel fear that (God forbid), I could one day lose Brian or Jack. Having a husband I adore and baby son on the way made the whole thing so real and so painful, and much more teary than I imagined.

That being said, my belief is that Jesus is who he says He is, and that he truly did raise from the dead on Easter—three days after he was buried. And with that belief, I know that what is after this life is far, far better and more magnificent that anything we experience here. The beauty we see on this earth is nothing but a small glimpse of who God is and what lies ahead in our eternity in His presence.

With that in mind, and with another funeral so fresh in my mind, I can’t help but feel an adjustment in my perspective. It’s often only through death and tragedy that we are reminded of what really matters in life, and that we think about the legacy we will leave behind when we pass away—whether that day is tomorrow or when we’re old and wrinkly.

Needless to say, this Easter Sunday is filled with much more sorrow, pondering, and hope than any before. Life is short and fleeting, and we have to make each day count for something. And we need not live grand lives to do so, but rather take a lesson from Uncle Randy, living a small but extremely meaningful life of kindness, faith, discipline and love.

If you died tomorrow, what would you want to be remembered for? What would you hope people would say at your funeral?

Photo of a Wyoming sunset on our drive there from Denver.

2 Comments

  • Reply
    Joanna
    April 20, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Good question, Natalie. I’d want people to remember my smile. To say that I was warm and loving and kind. A good sister and a good wife. And when I write this it brings tears to my eyes because if that’s what I want my life to be, I’m doing a pretty good job and am right on track. I don’t need to be overly worried about what I’m “doing” with my life career-wise or who I’m going to “be.” I already am that person. And now I have the opportunity to continue to practice being that.

    I hope you can continue to remember a life well-lived and cherish these moments, even if they burn deep with emotion.

    Have you read Carry On Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton? She suggests that a broken heart is a beautiful thing and almost a hopeful thing. “We now know that a broken heart is not the end of the world, but a beginning.” This post/conversation reminded me of that.

  • Reply
    Jessica
    April 20, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    I have experienced this overwhelming reverence for Good Friday this Easter season and I simply want God. I want to be remembered for the joy that I reflect and the love that I pour out into others in response to the love God has given me. If I don’t have that, I have nothing.

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