It has been a solemn few days for me. When I returned from our vacation, I found out that one of our friends from church – their son died in a tragic accident. He was hit by a out of control car. He was only 21 years old. I always had a heart for this kid. He reminded me of me when I was his age – grew up in church, but was no longer interested and going his own way.
His mom is my children’s preschool teacher and I would often ask her about her son and how he was doing. She always spoke about him with a loving heart but also sad over the decisions he had been making. I used to remember the terrible things I did to my own parents during my time of rebellion and I would pray for this boy that he would someday come back.
I was devastated to hear that he had passed away. I went to the wake and there were hundreds of people young and old grieving together. I stood in line to hug his parents and express my condolences. His mom cried on my shoulder and both her and her husband talked about how they knew I had prayed for him and how they so appreciated those prayers.
I have experienced quite a few deaths so far in my lifetime, recently being my grandma. But also friends from my past dieing of drug overdoses, car accidents, and such. But when a young person goes, I have to stop myself from questioning God and why He would allow these things to happen. It is an act of my will to say – “God, I don’t understand why certain things happen, horrible and unfair things, but I will not question you. I trust you and pray for comfort for those who are suffering loss.”
I then think about my own children and the possibility of them dieing. I hate to think this way, but what if it happened to me? Life is so uncertain. So many people in my life who I am aquainted with – friends, family, even internet connections – many have gone through terrible loss. Over the past few days a fear has immerged within me that I know comes from the devil himself. A fear of losing my husband or even my children. I have thought about it over and over again. And I am writing about it so that I can get it out and be free of it. I know that it isn’t healthy for me to do this.
There are a lot of verses in the Bible that talk about fear. So, I decided to do some research and came up with 2 really great scriptures that I am going to memorize and bring to mind whenever this tries to bring me down over the next few weeks.
Isaiah 41:10 “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
2 Timothy 1:7 “God has not given us the (evil) spirit of fear, but (Holy Spirit) power, (Father God’s) love, and a sound mind (renewed by Jesus, who speaks God’s word to us in the scripture).”
The title of this post is “Contemplation on Life’s Uncertainty”. As human beings, we can get stuck in fear of the uncertainty of life. We can waste time focusing our thoughts on the negative things that COULD happen in our lives and the lives of those close to us. But this type of thinking can hurt and destroy us. We need to change our thoughts and focus on the positive. Worry can grip us and for some it can be VERY hard to get out of. But worry is wrong. It is the opposite of trust. God wants us to put our trust in Him no matter what our circumstances. So, I encourage you to join me in this fight against negative thinking. Many of us carry unbearable emotional pain and the devil is using it to destroy us. Let’s step out in faith and become conquerers for the sake of Christ. His love with carry us through this.
I know that many of you (my readers) have faced death, maybe even the death of a child. I would love to hear from you and how you have overcome. Did you question God? Did you get angry at God? Please share.
I was saddend to hear of the passing of your friend’s son. Death is never an easy thing and is one of the great trials in this life. My dear neice, who was only 4 months old, was thrown from her car, during an accident, because of a defective car seat and then the car rolled over her. When her parents were able to find her she had gone home to her Heavenly Father. As you can imagine the whole family was devestated, but they did not despair because they knew- beyond a shadow of a doubt- that because Christ broke the bands of death that they would be reunited with their daughter again. They now have four more children and I know that the Mother of those children has been through every emotion there is, yet today she is happy and full of optimism. She knows that she can fear the future and all the things that can happen, but fear of death has no power over her anymore. She knows that this life is just a short time and that, if she lives as she should, she can live with her family forever in the kingdom of heaven. Death is only truely terrifying if you do not know what the next life brings and if you think that this life is the end. Through Christ’s atonement and ressurection we know that we too will be resurrected and have the opportunity to be able to live forever with those we love.
I have one more story to share from a talk given by a leader in my church:
“In about March 1946 a Church member found herself in an area no longer controlled by the government under which she had resided.
She and her husband had lived an idyllic life in East Prussia. Then had come the second great world war within their lifetimes. Her beloved young husband was killed during the final days of the frightful battles in their homeland, leaving her alone to care for their four children.
The occupying forces determined that the Germans in East Prussia must go to Western Germany to seek a new home. The woman was German, and so it was necessary for her to go. The journey was over a thousand miles (1,600 km), and she had no way to accomplish it but on foot. She was allowed to take only such bare necessities as she could load into her small wooden-wheeled wagon. Besides her children and these meager possessions, she took with her a strong faith in God…
She and the children began the journey in late summer. Having neither food nor money among her few possessions, she was forced to gather a daily subsistence from the fields and forests along the way. She was constantly faced with dangers from panic-stricken refugees and plundering troops.
As the days turned into weeks and the weeks to months, the temperatures dropped below freezing. Each day, she stumbled over the frozen ground, her smallest child—a baby—in her arms. Her three other children struggled along behind her, with the oldest—seven years old—pulling the tiny wooden wagon containing their belongings. Ragged and torn burlap was wrapped around their feet, providing the only protection for them, since their shoes had long since disintegrated. Their thin, tattered jackets covered their thin, tattered clothing, providing their only protection against the cold.
Soon the snows came, and the days and nights became a nightmare. In the evenings she and the children would try to find some kind of shelter—a barn or a shed—and would huddle together for warmth, with a few thin blankets from the wagon on top of them.
She constantly struggled to force from her mind overwhelming fears that they would perish before reaching their destination.
And then one morning the unthinkable happened. As she awakened, she felt a chill in her heart. The tiny form of her three-year-old daughter was cold and still, and she realized that death had claimed the child. Though overwhelmed with grief, she knew that she must take the other children and travel on. First, however, she used the only implement she had—a tablespoon—to dig a grave in the frozen ground for her tiny, precious child.
Death, however, was to be her companion again and again on the journey. Her seven-year-old son died, either from starvation or from freezing or both. Again her only shovel was the tablespoon, and again she dug hour after hour to lay his mortal remains gently into the earth. Next, her five-year-old son died, and again she used her tablespoon as a shovel.
Her despair was all consuming. She had only her tiny baby daughter left, and the poor thing was failing. Finally, as she was reaching the end of her journey, the baby died in her arms. The spoon was gone now, so hour after hour she dug a grave in the frozen earth with her bare fingers. Her grief became unbearable. How could she possibly be kneeling in the snow at the graveside of her last child? She had lost her husband and all her children. She had given up her earthly goods, her home, and even her homeland.
In this moment of overwhelming sorrow and complete bewilderment, she felt her heart would literally break. In despair she contemplated how she might end her own life, as so many of her fellow countrymen were doing. How easy it would be to jump off a nearby bridge, she thought, or to throw herself in front of an oncoming train.
And then, as these thoughts assailed her, something within her said, “Get down on your knees and pray.” She ignored the prompting until she could resist it no longer. She knelt and prayed more fervently than she had in her entire life:
“Dear Heavenly Father, I do not know how I can go on. I have nothing left—except my faith in Thee. I feel, Father, amidst the desolation of my soul, an overwhelming gratitude for the atoning sacrifice of Thy Son, Jesus Christ. I cannot express adequately my love for Him. I know that because He suffered and died, I shall live again with my family; that because He broke the chains of death, I shall see my children again and will have the joy of raising them. Though I do not at this moment wish to live, I will do so, that we may be reunited as a family and return—together—to Thee.”
When she finally reached her destination of Karlsruhe, Germany, she was emaciated. Brother Babbel said that her face was a purple-gray, her eyes red and swollen, her joints protruding. She was literally in the advanced stages of starvation. In a Church meeting shortly thereafter, she bore a glorious testimony, stating that of all the ailing people in her saddened land, she was one of the happiest because she knew that God lived, that Jesus is the Christ, and that He died and was resurrected so that we might live again. She testified that she knew if she continued faithful and true to the end, she would be reunited with those she had lost and would be saved in the celestial kingdom of God.”
Read the whole talk at: http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?hideNav=1&locale=0&sourceId=58a7230bac7f0210VgnVCM100000176f620a____&vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD
I’m sorry this is so long, but I hope it might help you find hope and not fear in death. I wish you the best and know that God loves you!
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jessica c says
I am so sorry to hear about the death of your friends child. Death is always heartbreaking but when a child dies it just seems unbearable.
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Felicia - I Complete Me says
I am so sorry to hear about this. I too always wonder about my children and the pain one feels when losing a child instead of the other way around. I also worry about my children losing me at such a young age in their life. We don’t know what tomorrow brings therefore we shouldn’t worry about (Mathew 6:24, I believe). Concentrate on the moments we have right in front of us so we can enjoy and those around us can enjoy our lives to the fullest.
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Louella Gould says
Death is always difficult especially when losing someone close. I lost my son to AIDS three years ago and memories of him constantly sweep over me at the most unexpected moments. I’ve been learning to welcome them and then let them go again. Fortunately, he had come to a deep faith in Christ the last few years. His story is amazing and is, perhaps, one the greatest sources of inspiration to others yet seeking. That is a great comfort to me. Your lead photo seems to capture this contemplation. I would love to use it with your permission for an inspirational video I’m working on for a large religious gathering. If this is possible, I would be honored. – Louella Gould