ca. 1985 - 2000, Lusaka, Zambia --- A wife mourns over the coffin of her husband who died from AIDS-related illness. --- Image by © Jeremy Horner/Corbis

A wife mourns over the coffin of her husband Image by Jeremy Horner/Corbis

In today’s Personal Struggle Series [#PSSeries], our focus is on “The Death of a loved one”.

The death of a loved one is often times accompanied by hurt, questions and uncertainties. What should we know about The Death of a Loved one? How should we handle The Death of a Loved one? Read on.

This was a struggle I personally faced when I lost my brother, who was not just a brother, but a friend, confidant, mentor…among other things. His death was a huge blow to me, and my family, he was barely 20 years old. When he died, I was plagued with questions, lots of them; was he killed, did he die at the right time, doesn’t God heal…bla bla bla.

It was a hard time for my faith, questioning everything I have believed in; God, His existence, His love, His abilities…

But these truths made all the difference;

  1. Understanding what Death means to a Christian.

Death to a Christian is not a loss. To the family and friends, of course it is a loss, you’ll be hurt and pained, you’ll cry and mourn, but to that person it is not a loss; IT’S A GAIN.

“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain (even better)”. Familiar with that statement? It was uttered by Paul in Philipians 1:21.

We’ve seen cases where Christians have divine experiences at the point of their death. Like Stephen in the Bible who saw heaven, saw Christ waiting for him. I’m sure at that point, they had no more interest or connection with this world, they wouldn’t wish to stay back.

The text below explicitly answers the question of what happens to a Christian when they die;

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died 1 Thess 4:13-14

This leads to the next point.

  1. Afterlife

If there was no afterlife then we can just cry and mourn, but since we have a hope for an afterlife, then that is another consolation for us, we’ll meet again to part no more.

For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised…Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, 1 Cor 15:16,18,20

And the afterlife, i.e. heaven is a place of incomprehensible joy and peace, one nobody will even want to trade for this world.

Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat upon them, nor any scorching heat….He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”” Rev 7: 16; 21:4

I believe that the thought and pain of losing a loved one should motivate us to reach out to all our unsaved friends and family, so that when they eventually die, which is inevitable, it won’t be a cause for regret but rejoicing.

 

I believe this post will not be complete if I don’t talk about cases where the person that died is a pillar to their family, breadwinner or care-giver.

In such a case, it is very understandable to be in deep sorrow and think the world has come to an end, but we can take comfort in this.

Sing to God, sing praises to His name; Lift up a song for Him who rides through the deserts, Whose name is the LORD, A father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows, Is God in His holy habitation. Psm 68:4-5.

I love the way Jer 49:11 puts it; “But I will protect the orphans who remain among you. Your widows, too, can depend on me for help.”

It is God that provides, protects and sustains from heaven, He is called a father, not a ceremonial position, but an actual one. He might not be here physically, but He can use anybody, He is able to raise help where we least expect, if He can rain down food in the desert because there was no other means of feeding His people, He can and He will take care of you, so cheer up. And look up to Him.

 

Other Bible reading;

But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come? For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain (Extracted from 1 Cor 15)

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You’ll also like to read these articles;

ABOUT THE DEATH OF A LOVED ONE 2

ABOUT THE DEATH OF A LOVED ONE 3

ABOUT THE DEATH OF A LOVED ONE 1

IF I DIE TONIGHT

See you tomorrow by 12 Noon for an answer to another of life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle.

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