I like structure. The grain bins at work are well structured. They fit together like a puzzle and it takes a great force of brute strength or the knowledge of know-how to take them down. Beautifully, intricately laced together pieces of metal.
Doesn’t seem like it would mean much, but to the creator, it is his masterpiece. It has a job to do, this grain bin. It was created with a purpose in mind. It was not created to be torn down or forced into submission. It may stand for years. Formidable and a real presence that can be seen for miles around, these bins live out theirs lives doing their job, untouchable as the sun. Or so it seems.
“For you created my innermost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.”
–Psalm 139:13, NIV
We too, are made with a specific purpose in mind. In the beginning, we were created to be companions; sinless and blameless: perfect, so we could commune with the Lord. Even after the Fall, God made a way to redeem us, though sin still resides in this body, in this life. We were made to be pillars, much like the grain bins, strong in the faith, in the knowledge of God; not to topple over at the slightest breeze come to blow past us.
We were made with a purpose in mind. Life on this earth, glorifying our Father, preparing for Heaven. So what happens when our wretched earthly body gives in to sickness, to ailments, to the incurable? What happens when we are forced to face the fact that this body is not as infallible as we once thought.
We all know we are going to die someday…SOMEDAY being the opportune word. When we are old. When we have lived a full life. When our children are grown. When when when. Not that anyone really wants to think about that. Because…. (And forgive me for the doubt here, Lord, but it goes through everyone’s mind at least once)…. Because what if this is it? What if there is no afterlife, eternal life, heaven, and what if there is but I haven’t done good enough to make it in? What if.
Sadness seeps in. Sorrow for the past and sorrow for the future that never will be. How do we overcome that? Is it possible? I wish I knew the answer. Or rather, the right answer. All I got is, death is not the end. It’s merely a stepping stone; the first step of a staircase we cannot see. And it will be okay.
Why worry? Why cry? We will miss. Be missed. But what good is it to bawl until I’m a useless snot-rag? The step must be taken. One way or another. Sooner or later. Our earthly vessels give out. Rust away. Rot.
I don’t mean to be cynical or lackadaisical about death, but when it knocks on your door, or that of someone you love, what can be done about it? The door must be answered, it must be let in, we must accept it. After all, it doesn’t really give us any other choice.
How then, do we help the living accept it? It seems a little superfluous that the one whom death is calling must help the living accept it, but that is often the way it is. How do we help them help others? How do I support a grieving family member who refuses to deal with his or her emotions? How do I remain strong emotionally for that person when my strength is being slowly eroded away as well?
I wish I had answers to these questions. Maybe someday, when I am finished with college and a little more intelligent (one can hope :D) I will know the correct response. Until then, or until experience forces me to learn, I suppose I will just have to wonder…and muddle through the best I know how.
I covet your prayers, dear readers. That I might know what direction to take, what to do, how to act, should this grim reality ever present itself to me.
Good night, dear friends.