Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Walk-on Wednesday - Death’s Lessening Effect - Martin Wiles

Welcome to Walk-on Wednesday. By Hump Day, we are struggling, but we believe a good devotion can strengthen us to finish the week strong. 

He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever. Revelation 21:4 NLT

His death helped me understand death’s lessening effect.

John Donne said, “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.” And his did.

He and I became good friends when I pastored a church in the same town as he did. Although we belonged to different denominations, the differences didn’t interfere with our friendship. We worked together in community events and multi-church gatherings.

After two years, I moved away. Shortly afterward, I received a disturbing call from my friend. He had passed out bending over and was transported to the hospital for tests. The results were life-transforming. He had an inoperable brain tumor. He agreed to take treatments, but the doctors weren’t hopeful.

On a trip to the area to visit a relative, my wife and I stopped by the nursing home where he had been placed. He looked old and different. We had a good talk, and I prayed for him. I imagined it would be the last time I’d see him . . . and it was. His death, however, diminished me.

Thankfully, God has prepared a place for his children where death isn’t. Neither will there be sorrow, pain, grief, or any other unpleasant things we disdain. But until then, we must live, knowing our families and friends will die—us included.

Humanity has various genealogical lines, but we share a common ancestry. If we trace our roots back far enough, we discover the first couple—Adam and Eve. All humanity runs through our bloodline whether we consider them relatives or not. Paul said the entire law of God could be summed up in one directive: love others. Jesus said it was the second greatest commandment. Recognizing everyone is important to God should make them equally important to me.

We are all God’s creations and worthy of showing respect to—respect that should increase even more toward those who are in the same spiritual family. The death of others diminishes us, but love builds us up.

How can you love others the way God loves you.

Prayer: Father, may the lives of others be as important to us as they are to you. 

Tweetable: How do others' deaths affect you? 

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