Autumn. With every leaf that dances from its branch to the ground below, I see God waving to me. If spring signals new birth, does that make fall a season of impending death? Why then would I look forward to all it has to offer: autumnal hues filling the horizon, cooler days, crisp nights, warm fires, simmering stews and pumpkin spice candles filling the room with pleasant aroma. No hints of doom. And here I sit waiting for the phone to ring with news of my mother in law's drawing nearer death. I've always wondered how God's goodness causes an unspoken request for a child to wish his or her parent absent from this world. At times, the thought seems severe and inconceivable but right now it only seems gracious. And necessary. Not my choice, as my brother would remind me, but life is over for her though her body waits in rest before the doctors can call time. Absent from the body and present with the Lord. I've heard it and I've read it. So tonight I read it some more. I know the Lord waits for us to be in His presence and for an eternity. After attending many funerals, I assuredly realize that the body is void of any life. Often it's void of any semblance of ever living because the missing spirit leaves such a deep emptiness behind. However, I am not too convinced that though no death decree has been made, our loved ones haven't been ushered into heaven already. Heart still beating, yet filled will the joy of angels singing. For us the symphony falls only on deaf ears as we anticipate our loved one's passing. This earthly life is sure to break our hearts, but our journey ends (and begins) in the Promised Land...all hurting then abandoned.
Go rest high on that mountain, Ma-we'll see you there.