Everyone has to die once, then face the consequences. Hebrews 9:27 (TM)
People are surprised when I tell them I’d rather preside over a funeral than a wedding almost any day of the week. Weddings anymore are huge distractions. Trying to navigate all the trappings to find any real meaning in the ceremony is difficult, and even when the meaning is there you can be sure that no one is listening. The bride is freaking out about every detail, the groom is thinking about the wedding night. Women are thinking about their own weddings, the bride’s dress, the flowers, etc. while men are wondering how long it will be until they can get on to the reception and the food.
When you’re at a funeral, and there’s a dead body in the room, there’s little escaping the truth of today’s verse. It’s not that I have some sadistic joy at seeing people’s grief. The way I see it, if the person who died was a believer, then this is actually a joyous event. They are better off than we can possibly imagine. If there are non-believers at the funeral, this may be one of the few times in their lives that they contemplate the reality of their own impending death and it will force them to consider their eternal standing with God. That’s an opportunity for The Message to take hold and forever change their life…and that’s a hopeful thing.