I MADE IT! I made it to day ten!! Never thought I’d see it, wow. Would have never thought I’d be doing a thirty day prayer challenge at 20-something years old but that’s exactly what I’m doing and boy it has taught me a lot. Weird how life works. Anyways, todays challenge seemed fitting to this celebration. Today I was challenged to reflect on death, my own to be specific.
This challenge reminded me of a time when I was in high school, before I came to Christ. I took an english class and loved the teacher. He always helped us expand our thinking and ask bigger questions. We had this assignment throughout each semester to write about 8 journal entries. The topic was completely up to you, he just wanted us to write. For some reason I became fascinated with fear and death so I decided to write a paper on it. I’m sure the paper was a bit juvenile but I remember writing how things that we fear in life can be traced to our root fear of death or pain. Maybe not all things but most. Not only am I speaking of physical pain but even emotional pain. Pain being categorized as any feelings of displacement, discomfort, physical hurt, emotional hurt, etc. So what are some of the most common fears? Death being a big one, also public speaking, sharks, spiders, commitment to name a few. Often we fear death because it is the fear of the unknown. I know that I used to get anxiety about the future. When thinking of death, we cannot be 100% certain of what will happen. Only those who have died know. Many people begin to doubt themselves and there own beliefs when they stare death in the face. Like a man who considered himself agnostic on the ground but when he’s up in the air and his plane is going down, he’s praying on his knees. I’m not saying that happens to everyone. Obviously not every single person who has been in a life threatening situation has prayed or come to Christ. But there are some incredible stories of Christians who have been stared down by death and they stare right back. Often you hear stories of missionaries who are captured and tortured till they renounce Jesus as their savior. So many have died purely because of their beliefs and refusal to give up Jesus. Many who have survived these horrors say, Jesus never gave up on me, why should I give up on Him? It’s so incredible to hear how strong their faith is while facing death. It reminds me of exactly what Jesus did on the cross, He overcame death. He stayed strong for us and we must remember to stay strong as He is always with us.
I can’t speak for everyone but I know that I am drawn to control future events if I am given the opportunity. It’s in my nature to want to know what’s going to happen next and influence situations. One of the hardest things I’ve had to let go of is knowing I cannot control what happens to me or anyone else. All I can control is how I choose to react in a situation. I can choose to be angry about something, to let fear and anxiety control my heart or I can learn to trust God with everything. I used to be the person who would freak out if I was running late to meeting or something along those lines. I always try to be on time and usually a few minutes early. Whenever I’d look at the clock and see I was late, I’d start thinking of excuses and begin my apology speech in my head. I’d become full of anxiety. Since coming to Christ and actually trusting Him with everything, I have seen such a change. Now, I still try to be on time but if I’m running late, I don’t get anxiety. I don’t make up excuses anymore, I’m late. I always think, I’ll get there when I get there and for now I’m just going to enjoy getting there. So when it comes to death, I have a strong desire to know what’s going to happen after. But now that I know I will hopefully be with Christ, I have comfort. Right now life feels like I’m late to a meeting. And I don’t want to make up any excuses, any speeches, I’m want to enjoy getting to where I’m going to end up.
I look forward to death because I love surprises and I’ll be with Christ. That’s a weird way to look at it but I believe that there is something after death. Something we can’t even fathom here in this world. I can’t be 100% sure of what that is. We could discuss theological perspectives and argue about revelations but all I know is I am going to be ready when that time comes. I’m not afraid of death, death is a part of life. Death cannot be without life. Death was the one thing that we were to fear but we no longer have to. Christ has overcome, Christ has taken the fear away along with death.
God bless you and remember, you are beautifully made in the image of God.
Side Note: I am planning on running the Chicago marathon with Team World Vision, an organization that runs to raise money for clean water for kids in Africa. If you’d like to donate you can go to this link Donate Here. Besides that, prayer is always appreciated if you feel so inclined.