(This is dedicated to our loved ones who have died and are alive in God.)
Once, when I was a child, a married couple who lived in our neighborhood got into an argument in our kitchen. Afterward, my father said, “They act as if they have forever.” In other words, if they realized the limits of life they might still disagree, but it would be less important.
We never know when we are seeing a person for the last time. This doesn’t mean we should suppress our anger, or reject our feelings; it means we should always try to keep things in proper perspective.
It is impossible to live well if we avoid the reality of death. Awareness of death does not have to make us afraid, or morbid, or depressed. Instead, this awareness can intensify faith, hope, and love, and awaken greater appreciation for the people, places, and things around us. Knowing that we and the people we love (and don’t love) will die one day can help us to remember what is truly important in the here and now.
Loving God, and others as ourselves, is the greatest commandment because it is the only response to life that makes any sense in the face of death.
“What you think about death, and life beyond it, is the key to thinking seriously about everything else.” – N. T. Wright