Friday, February 22, 2013

40 Prayers of Lent, Day 8

Today's [or actually, yesterday's] prompt:  We must -- at some point along our Lenten journey -- be candid about death. Lent begins with the reminder of our mortality, with the ashes from which we are knit together, and the season reaches its climax in the crucifixion of Jesus.The truth of death is painful, which is why (as I wrote here) it is important that we keep one another company in the shadows of death. Even Jesus, praying at Gethsemane before his death, asked his friends to keep him company. "Then he said to them, 'I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here and stay awake with me.'" (Matthew 26:8, NRSV)

Death confounds me. In September I sat with Wiconi (our dog) while she died. I comforted her. I cried tears over her. She was sick and it was time, yet the unknown of death still causes discomfort in my soul. Her death is different to me than Nala's or Otis's as I was not with either of them. My heart hurts for Otis who passed on his own.

My faith tells me that I am never alone, even in death. Yet, my human, analytical mind wants more. During these times of doubt and wonder, I search for Jesus more. And the final verse of this Untitled Hymn brings me comfort:

And with your final heartbeat
Kiss the world goodbye
Then go in peace, and laugh on Glory's side, and
Fly to Jesus
Fly to Jesus
Fly to Jesus and live!

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