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Finding True Comfort in the Face of Death

Of all great wonders, none is greater than man. Only for death can he find no cure. —Sophocles

A pastor was on a plane filled with people who had just gotten off cruise ships in Miami. Everybody was still in the party mood, but then, reality caught up with them. One of the women in the front of the plane began having a hard time. Then all at once, she slumped forward… dead. Right there in the middle of the airborne party. They landed in Dallas, removed the body, and resumed their journey to Los Angeles.

The pastor told the flight attendant, “Ma’am, I’m a pastor. If anyone would like to talk to me about what’s happened, I’m in seat 12A.” The flight attendant responded, “No problem sir. We are going to give everyone free drinks for the rest of the flight.” And she was right. Within an hour, everyone was back in the festive party mood.

Isn’t that the way most of us try to deal with death? It’s like were floating along on this big cruise ship called “life.” Every once in a while, somebody around us falls out of the party. It catches our attention for a moment; but rather than dealing with it, we grab on to anything we can to numb our feelings so the party can continue. But if we’re honest, we must face the fact that all of us will die physically.

Your body will die.

Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. (James 4:14)

Aristotle said that death is the “most terrible” of all things. Epicurus said that death is “the most terrifying” of all things. But Jesus said the truth sets us free. Is it possible that believing the truth about death could bring life into clearer, more purposeful focus?

Eternal God, let the truth about the inevitable death of my body propel me into a more vibrant life today. Amen.

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