Ecc:7:2 It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.COMMENT:Every time I go to a funeral I am reminded of this truth. We see the body of a loved one in that coffin. He is graveyard dead - as people in the south would say. He/she is dead, absolutely dead and now we will bury this body. It has completed the task God had ordained it to do, albeit not all were obedient to this responsibility.As we ponder the life of this individual, we think about what was, what motivated them and how they lived out this motivation. Some was obviously fleshy and others were acts of grace, mercy and faith. In all this mix there is the individual temperament that added a uniqueness in how it was done. As I ponder the life of my recent deceased uncle, I feel totally blessed and grateful for my heritage. It was not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. There were issues I had to deal with because of some people living for the flesh, but still there were too many others who were there to off-set this weakness. Through all this there were those who did live for the LORD which means one is definitely without excuse. My heritage provided me with an opportunity to hear and respond to the Gospel. My uncle had this reputation with his pastors that after a sermon he would greet them with a comment and sometimes he spoke with tears running down his cheeks, commenting on ones need for grace and mercy. What a rich heritage...I am blessed.I cannot help but compare this occasion with one where we had a reunion in early spring. All or most of these same people attended that reunion. The atmosphere of that occasion vs this one was totally different. I suspect the reason for this contrast is that the LORD had the preeminence in this occasion. We were sobered about life and death and how do we fit into this scheme of things? Since this is the case one can easily see how God will and can use death to speak to people, just like me and others did last Saturday.Yes, God is so good.
If seeing someone dead does not sober us, what will?As it is, I drove past a church, a few weeks ago, and a funeral had just taken place.People were outside laughing and smoking, like nothing had happened.It is, as the scripture says, the end of all men.
I would like to share something about this uncle.He was in failing health for a little over two weeks before he died. In the most recent days before he died he was drifting in and out of consciousness...his daughter described it as a transition from life to death. It was during this time when he saw heavenly things. He spoke of what he saw...One was he saw his oldest brother beckoning him to come one - "that it is beautiful 'here'". Behind him was his brother-in-law that had died recently and my dad motioning him to come on. So sacred, so holy, so comforting.This vision does generate more questions but one must be willing to be satisfied with what the LORD was teaching us all via the revelation he did share through this uncle. Praise the LORD!EDITED