My friend, may I ask you a question? Is there ever a good time to think about our own passing? I mean literally. Is there a good time to picture our own demise and discover in that thought a comfort, a legitimate purpose, in the going away and not coming back again?
My friend, life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I’m Mark Brunner.
Have you ever gone to you own funeral? Naturally, of course, it’s not possible, but many if not all of us have at times fantasized what it might be like. We imagine the setting, the mourning, the consoling that would be going on all around the bier. “Oh how they will miss me, we think.” “They should have appreciated me more while I was alive.” That’s the most common thought in these fantasies. “The nice things people would say about me. Hearing the positive ways I impacted their life during my time here on Earth.” “How I was so loved and had had so much going for me. How greatly I will be missed.” Psychiatrists would say that this is the longing of someone who wanted to feel loved, accepted and worthy, but didn’t find this easily in life. Healthy people, emotionally, don’t envy someone because they passed away. A feeling of “what is wrong with you” is quick to consume us when we think this way. Nevertheless, is there ever a good time to think about our own passing? I mean literally. Is there a good time to picture our own demise and discover in that thought a comfort, a legitimate purpose, in the going away and not coming back again?
While it’s probably never good to think about our own death, for the sake of our own emotional health and well-being, there are times when we probably do need to attend our own funeral, despite how physically impossible that might seem. When it comes to putting to death the sinful man, the fleshly, lusting and self-indulgent part of who we are, it is a very good thing to fantasize, yes plan our funeral.
Wesley’s Commentary puts it this way. “And they that are Christ’s - True believers in him. Have thus crucified the flesh - Nailed it, as it were, to a cross whence it has no power to break loose, but is continually weaker and weaker. With its affections and desires - All its evil passions, appetites, and inclinations.” Friends, that’s a funeral in my book. It’s also a funeral with a plus; death is thrown in for free. There’s no one is in attendance other than us and our Lord. There’s nothing in this funeral that speaks to being missed or being, perhaps, misunderstood. No, this funeral is a somber affair and we’re glad to see it passing and gone. The sinful us deserves this funeral and there need be no witnesses to it other than Jesus and us.
Paul states in Galatians 5:24. “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” My life and yours here on earth is not naturally sanctified unless we die in the flesh to live in Christ. When we commit our lives to Jesus Christ, we have planned our own funeral, the death of the natural man so that the spiritual man might be free from the bondage of sin and the corrupted nature of who we are. Truly we have passed away when we are witness to it. This is a case of freely envisioning how our sinful self will look at death. In fact we ought to beware of refusing to thi