Thursday, February 2, 2012

Life and Death

Life.

When does life begin?  Such a simple question and yet there is so much debate.  There is no doubt in my mind that life begins at the moment of conception.  When Denise had a miscarriage before we adopted Laura, even after only two months, we lost a child.  That also means that abortion is the murder of an unborn child.  It does not matter the condition of the child, God gave life and life is His to take away.  Does that mean I understand why?  Absolutely not.  But I do know that there are people who would love to have an unwanted child as part of their family.  God has a plan and a purpose for each one of us.

Spending time with some orphans here in Ukraine, my heart really goes out to them.  There are some boys that I would love to bring home with me.  They are such great kids.  To be honest, we struggle with knowing whether or not God would have us pursue adopting one or two more kids.  With our oldest daughter graduating from high school this spring, we already have a big change ahead of us and our home will be much different with only one child.  If you think about it, pray that God would give us wisdom.

Life itself is more than just living, breathing, and going about our daily duties.  We only really live when we have committed our lives to God and are fulfilling the plan and purpose that He has for us.  God wants for us to choose life!

Life.  is.  Priceless.

When does life end?  This is another difficult question.  I believe that there are times when it is right to resuscitate and times when it is right not to resuscitate.  That is very different from terminating your own or someone else's life when they are still alive because of illness or disability.  One of the most difficult decisions families have to make when a loved one is being kept alive with life support is whether or not to terminate life support.  In the simplest sense, physical life ends when your heart, lungs, and brain cease to function.

My Mom died nearly four years ago.  We enjoyed the gift of a fabulous last Christmas with Mom, though I believe she knew that her lymphoma was starting to take over her body.  Shortly after New Year's she was almost too weak to walk.  She spent 21 days in the hospital and Dad was there with her all of them except one afternoon when he had to go home to take care of some business.  She was alive and talking in the hospital on her last Sunday, though my Dad could tell she was failing.  After church on Sunday night, my family told me to get to the hospital as soon as possible.  It took me about three hours to get there and, when I arrived at midnight, Mom had been in a coma for a while.  She did not die until about 4 AM.  During that time, we watched as her life slowly ebbed away.  Her breathing and pulse slowed and finally stopped.  Death had come and taken her into eternity, which meant complete healing in the presence of Jesus.  No more pain and suffering.

Death is more than just the end of living, breathing, and going about our daily duties.  Death is the door we must walk through to enter eternity - either an eternity of torment without God or an eternity in heaven with Him.  When we know our loved ones died knowing Jesus as their Lord and Saviour, and we do as well, we can mourn with the knowledge that we will see them again in heaven.  God is preparing a place for us.

Death.  is.  for.  Eternity.

How about you?  What value do you place on life?  Are you prepared to die, knowing that you will spend eternity in heaven?  If not, you can be.  Just ask me how.

2 comments:

Jeff Arp said...

I appreciate your convictions and testimonies. I have been told that a good shepherd knows how to take his pain and let it help him become a better shepherd. Pity the sheep who are led by a shepherd who has not had to deal with pain in their life. I pray God's richest blessings upon your family my fellow shepherd .

chasintheson said...

Love to read real Truth because the Truth is what sets me free. Love the word: "God gives life and takes life." Too many stand at the pulpit and say God is good all the time and all the time God is good; anything good is from God and anything bad is from the devil. When real men/women can preach real Word because they have endured real pain. Show them your scars!

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