Love got in the way


Today we said goodbye to someone who may not see Christmas.

As we drove home we thought about how we have plans for November, for Christmas Day, for Boxing Day, for February, for March and July and August and November and …  We expect to live.  We know we will live.

We must live for we are alive.

We live knowing we will die.  Yet we live believing we will live forever. Until we know we will die.  Then we believe we will not live forever.  We live knowing we will die.

– – – – – – – – – –

Today we said goodbye to someone who knows they may not see Christmas.

Words are unnecessary in that moment.  Words get in the way.  Words say the wrong thing trying to say the right thing.  Words say the right thing but are heard saying the wrong thing.

Words get in the way …

When we live knowing we will die.  Yet we live believing we will live forever.  Until we know we will die.  Then we believe we will not live forever.  We live knowing we will die.

– – – – – – – – – –

We use this word “die” a lot in church.  I have used this word die in the same way.  I do use this word in the same way.  We die to self.  We must (die and) be born again.  Dying as we use it is a good thing.  A necessary thing.  A loving thing.  And today I was reminded of the reality of death.  And that word was never even used.

It was too brutal.

Die.  Is a brutal word.  Death is the ceasing of life.  Die.  Is a brutal word.  Except as we use it in church.  In church it is a loving word.  It is never brutal.  It is never final.  It is never hopeless.  It is always used in the same sentence as life.

Why is that?

– – – – – – – – – –

Today we did not say goodbye to someone who may not see Christmas.

Die and life and goodbye were not the words used today.

Words were too brutal.

Love got in the way.

.

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6 thoughts on “Love got in the way

  1. I got lost down the line, but I got your point in the end: sounds like you’re contrasting life and death in two realms, namely the way each is used in the world and in the church, and their inherent impact. It’s hard to get your pen. Is that a poem? How do you write your posts?

  2. As someone who works with the dying and their families, I think you have it exactly backwards. And I know that religious belief about death cause the most complex grief. Funny, that.

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