Grace to You!
Funerals are sober moments. The death of a loved one, a close friend or member of our family, often makes us pause and reflect on life.
I remember when my youngest brother, Ugo, died at the age of 14. It was the darkest moment in the life of my family and my life too. Yet, through it I learned the disposition of resignation. The terrifying truth of that moment—he is gone and never to be seen again, at least here on earth—taught me to resign to divine will.
There are many things we don’t have control over. Death is the chief of them. We simply find ways to deal with it, and mourn with hope. Finding peace in the situation is the key to closure.
Death, especially of a loved one, is a tutor. We learn a lot from it. Though we may forget the lessons after some months or years, it would be wonderful if we kept the memory alive. Not to mourn without hope, but to relish the deep sentiments and the lessons learned. Those thoughts may, after all, be God speaking to us during the sober moment; reminding us of what is necessary in life and what isn’t.
The thought of death and the reality we can’t see our loved one again, at least on earth, is terrifying. The least we can do is console one another. The best consolation is assurance of life eternal. It’s the way to peace.
God’s word reassures. Hope of eternal life is consoling. If life were completely emptied of its reality without hope of something to come, the pain of the loss of a loved one would be long and tormenting. Life would’ve been a sorry sight. As Saint Paul reminds us in 1 Corinthian 15:16-19, eternal life is for real.
The good news is that for the righteous, there is this blessed assurance: “But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and no torment will ever touch them. In the eyes of the foolish they seemed to have died, and their departure was thought to be an affliction, and their going from us to be their destruction; but they are at peace” (Wisdom 3:1-3).
Though the above quotation reminds many of us of funerals, it is equally a beautiful text for a daily contemplation. I understand more and more why Saint Augustine has said our soul will find rest only in God.
The soul must find its maker. It is where we belong. It is where we find eternal peace. Sleep in Christ is blessed sleep.
I pray that the Good Lord will give us the grace to choose life, life in him, which is our final victory over death. I pray also for those who are mourning, may they be consoled. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Tuesday Week 32 Ordinary Time A: Wisdom 2:23-3:9; Lk 17:7-10]
Fr. Maurice Emelu
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on the bible readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.