Yesterday, at my uncle’s funeral, when the preacher looked down at the casket and assured the family that this (death) was not the end, and asserted that if it were the end, life would be terrible, I experienced a sparkling moment of clarity in the blur of grief.
I realized that in spite of all my recent complaining about the pain and disappointments and heartaches in my life lately (and all the while accusing myself of lacking gratitude), indeed, I am grateful for life itself. I have been loved and I have loved. If this was it and if it all ended today—right here, with no heaven and no hell, I’d still be very grateful for the life I have been given. I can’t negate what I have been given by saying it would be terrible if life and then death were all there is.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that I am not grateful for the promise of eternal life and the glories of heaven. I think I am saying that if I never received another blessing from God, I have enough. I have been blessed beyond measure. Life is a gift.
(And God, help me to keep sight of my gratitude and to move (again) toward the realization that I have “enough” – no matter what my circumstances might be. Help me to remember that in You, I really am complete. And I am loved, warts and all. Because You know I will forget, and I will start to complain, and I will…well, You know me, You know how I am. And yet, You still love me.)