I was reading the paper last week and noticed an abundance of obituaries in the newspaper. Usually you see three or four, but there seemed to be more like eight or nine. It was like a spotlight shining on a section of the newspaper that one would normally just pass over. I glance over the names to see if there are anyone I know or anyone related to someone I know. This time, however, I was struck. It reminded me of this: Death is the only sure thing in this life.
According to the Census Bureau, 26% of all deaths last year occurred because of heart disease. In 2nd place was cancer with 23%, and strokes came in 3rd with 5.5%. The next three were respiratory diseases, accidents, and Alzheimer’s, respectively. Almost 2.5 million people died in America in 2010 in various ways, but no matter how someone dies, it is true that we all someday will die. It’s called “the Ultimate Statistic”: 10 out 10 people die.
I am not trying to be morbid, but trying to emphasize something that we normally try to forget. We don’t like to think about death, but given the fact that we will all eventually face it, sooner or later, doesn’t it make sense to ask some serious questions about it? Jesus asked some questions about death, or, more specifically, what happens to a person after death. He said this in Matthew 16:26: “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?”
Those are good questions, aren’t they? What does it profit a man, if he is king of the whole world, yet loses his soul in the afterlife? All the “toys” don’t make much sense at that point, do they?
Whether you like it or not, death is inevitable, and my invitation is to someday soon face that fact and do something about it. I leave this post with a poem I used to see as a boy written on the side of barn in northern Indiana:
“Life is Short
Death is Sure
Sin the Cause
Christ the Cure.”