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Saturday, February 13, 2010

I Don't Mean to be Morbid...

...but I've been thinking about death lately.

Not my death necessarily, but death in general. You can't help but think about it when you listen to or read the news. Let me share a few of the stories that have captured my thoughts and maybe you'll understand why I've been thinking about this subject of late.

A few days after the Haiti earthquake I made myself look at the pictures that were coming out of that devastated country. I say "made myself" because I don't like to see things like that, but I felt it was important that I know what those poor people were going through. I don't think I'll ever forget some of those images.

There was one picture in particular, however, that I couldn't get out of my mind.

It was a picture of a small car parked in front of a tumbled down building. It wasn't one of the smashed cars, but rather a car people were using to get around the city. The trunk was partially open. Inside it were two bodies. You could see an arm hanging out and the clothes they were wearing. But the thing that I just stared at were the feet sticking out the side. The dead man was wearing a nice white, newish looking pair of running shoes.

I couldn't help but think: "When he put on his shoes that morning, he had no idea he would be dead by the end of the day."

I mean, think about it. This young man got up that morning, dressed, and put on his shiny white running shoes. As he was tying the laces, do you think he realized he'd be crushed in an earthquake that day? Or was he probably thinking about work or school or what he was going to do later that evening?

The luger killed at the Olympics yesterday probably didn't get up that morning and say, "I'm going to die in a tragic accident today." No, he got up and got ready for a practice run, no doubt pretty excited about competing at the Olympics.

The eighteen-year-old son of a local pastor didn't think he'd fall asleep at the wheel and crash his car into a tree while coming home from a late-night youth event.

Our friend Rodney certainly didn't know he'd suffer a massive heart attack when he sat down in his favorite recliner to drink his morning cup of coffee and got ready for work.

The little 12 year-old Round Rock girl who was hit by a car as she tried to cross the street at night last week was simply going home.

These deaths came as a surprise. Their families and friends weren't prepared to lose them. But the thing that brings me a measure of comfort is knowing it wasn't a surprise to God. Psalm 139:16 says:

"All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

God knows the day we are born and the day we will die. It's recorded already in His book. Our frail human bodies were not built to live in this world forever, so the issue isn't that we will die someday. That is a fact we all have to face. YOU. WILL. DIE. SOMEDAY! The real issue is this:

Will you be ready when that day comes?

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