Hebrews 4:11,16 – Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall under the same example of unbelief. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 6:19 – Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, which entereth into that within the veil. (KJV)
It's a rare December that passes without the news of the death of a family friend or member. The news is received either in a Christmas card, by phone, and now even by e-mail.
Throughout my life I've experienced the sudden, tragic deaths of friends and family. They die and they are gone. Those left behind struggle through their grief until they reach a place of acceptance. They have not had time to say goodbye.
Some family and friends have had terminal illnesses over years, or months; but, just as lengthy illnesses teach us about Time Management as Wendy Adams suggested in her devotional of January 3rd, we are also given the gift of time: time to talk about important things, silly things; time to tell each other we cared, we loved, that they mattered in our lives and we in theirs; time to heal old wounds; time to forgive; time to say goodbye.
It took Jesus six hours to die when He was crucified. As He cried out in His suffering, one man rushed to give Him water and vinegar on a sponge… time to let Him know that He mattered, that in His final hour, someone cared.
We can't stop some illnesses and impending death. With His grace, we can accept the time given as a gift to be used wisely and lovingly.
Prayer: We thank you Father, that in the darkness of despair, you offer us light. Amen.