This autumn’s sure brought a strange season of sorrow… and though I’ve often said, sorrow skips no home, it seems its presence is far more prevalent in recent weeks. So much sorrow… so much loss. Though some loss is expected, the sorrow is never really conceived until it washes over the home… then, its intensity is overwhelming. Sorrow’s not only in death and loss, it’s in change and disappointment, sickness and disability. Sorrow’s so intensely personal and yet touches everyone who’s associated in some manner to the circumstances at the center of that sorrow… so sorrow’s sort of a community thing and is far reaching.
I’ve thought on the unexpected assault of sorrow and grief a lot lately as I think back a little more than a couple of weeks ago to the memorial service for our friend and all that’s happened in this relatively short space of time. And in this space of time I’ve mentioned to many: you never know when the loved one you enjoy today will not be around anymore. In a seeming moment, life changes and is never the same again.
Whenever I see the television reporter’s van at our little airport here in town, I think: O, no. Sometimes I know my: “O, no” is related to the ever ongoing saga of the proposed airport expansion and the heated tension in this community over all the ‘what if’s’ surrounding the impact such an expansion would possibly bring to pass. But I knew yesterday’s presence of the television reporters had nothing to do with the expansion. I knew there had to be some major problem. Returning home, I had more confirmation that something ‘really big’ had happened.
Most of the time when friends face loss or trials, my answer or my action is to make food. And when I see lots of cars, lots of food. So, that was yesterday. Our neighbors waited; cried and watched and waited, prayed and cried as they waited for news of the whereabouts of ten people aboard a skydiver’s plane that had disappeared and was presumed to have crashed in the Cascade mountains on Sunday night. That was the reason for the reporter’s hanging around the airport all day yesterday and this morning. But this afternoon, they’re no longer waiting for answers – at least not answers to the question of the location of the plane or if there were survivors… and their grief is inestimable. The plane with its pilot and nine passengers had crashed and none survived. Now, I suppose, their questions will likely only be answered in eternity. And for now, they’re left grieving… the loss of many things, many hopes and dreams. Of those friends, all they have are the sweet memories of those who were ‘family’ to them.
The most recent news piece is here.
In our Bible study this morning, we were so impressed with the many references to the holiness of God – the many references to praising God, to trusting in Him and rejoicing in Him. O, how I pray the families affected by this horrific tragedy will know the peace and comfort of the Lord and that He will minister to their hearts in this time of tremendous grief and sorrow.
All of these things serve to remind me – us – of the brevity of life and the uncertainty of days. And one thing is very certain… just as we shall all face sorrow, we shall all face our own end, the death of this life. And we will all meet the Lord. And we will all give an account. And eternity awaits us all. Eternity in heaven or eternity in hell. And the most sobering thing is that those who do not know Jesus will not spend eternity in heaven with Him but will be eternally separated from God. This is the record of His Word.
4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
5 Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
6 This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.
7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.
9 If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son.
10 He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.
11 And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
Sorrow skips no home… but in Jesus there is hope and life and peace.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes;
and there shall be no more death,
neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain:
for the former things are passed away. —The Revelation 21.4