Exodus 20:12 – Honor your father and mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you. (NIV)
On October 10th, the first anniversary of his death, we buried my late husband's ashes at the Cataraqui Cemetery in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Ernie was buried on top of his mother's grave, with the gravestone marker noting "Beloved Son and Husband". I have made the legal arrangement to be buried on top of the grave of his father, who proudly gave me away at our wedding because I had no earthly father.
Making these burial arrangements has had a huge spiritual impact on me. There's the obvious relief of having legal problems solved. More so, however, this process has made me very aware of the responsibility I feel to live a life that honours the lives of this extremely devout Mennonite family who, having escaped the Russian revolution themselves, took this scarred woman with a history into their family. My generation grew up where their name was often all that a family had. Today our Western culture seems to have lost the importance of this truth:
Proverbs 22:1 – A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver and gold. (NIV)
Having made the decision to have my earthly body lie in death with this godly family, I'm feeling that by bearing their family name, it behoves me to conduct my Christian life in such a way that, when I die, my earthly life will have been worthy of being buried above these people, until Jesus comes to claim our earthly bodies.
Even more than that, however, as Christians, our motivation should be to live lives worthy of the calling that Jesus Christ laid upon us when He saved us from our sins, and set us free to live for Him in an eternal relationship with His Father.
Colossians 1:9b-10 – We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God. (NIV 2011)
Prayer: Father God, in the name of Your Son Jesus, thank You for people who have the heart and means to take wounded people into their homes, and in doing so, provide them with a safe haven in which to heal. May we all live lives that are a credit to You, for we are all ambassadors for Christ, representing Him within our circle of influence. Amen.
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