Her funeral was held in a Lutheran church packed with family and friends. Over the course of an hour or so, we sang some of her favorite hymns – “In the Garden,” “When Morning Gilds the Skies,” “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee” – as well as the contemporary song “Shout to the Lord.” We heard some comforting readings from Scripture and a homily, as well as her grandson’s lovely (and often humorous) tribute to his grandmother. And of course we shared in a number of prayers.
There were some tears, but mostly shed over brave smiles. It seems that most of the woman’s family members are believers themselves. They haven’t lost her; they know exactly where she is, and know that they will be reunited with her eternally one happy day. And so they are able to rejoice over her home-going.
What a contrast to some of the funerals I’ve been to, where uncertainty or unbelief have reigned.
It makes me wonder once again what it is in our nature that allows us to approach certain death without looking into what comes next, and what our options might be.
Seriously: What if Christianity is true? What if eternity exists, and you will spend it in either heaven or hell? What if your ultimate destination depends not on how good you have been in this life, or how popular or how rich, but solely on whether or not you trusted in Christ to have paid the penalty for your sin?
Millions upon millions of people have believed just that over the centuries. Some of us even came to this conclusion after investigating the subject exhaustively.
Doesn’t it seem like the epitome of foolishness to refuse to look into it?
I spent the first 48 years of my life in precisely that state. Year after year, I told myself that no one could possibly know what happens after death, although I have no idea where I got that idea – certainly not as a result of any great intellectual inquiry. That journey was reserved for the 15 months following the biggest heartbreak of my life, and it led me to the doubt-free conclusion that Christianity is truth.
If you haven’t yet investigated this most important question, what exactly is stopping you? It can’t possibly be worth risking your eternity.
Here’s a good place to begin. I sincerely hope that you'll check it out.