For something as universal and experience as death you might think we’d talk about it more. You might think we would understand the experience better. You might think we’d be better prepared to love those experiencing a death in their life.
But you know as much as I do that for all we might think when we look at death objectively, rarely is that the lived experience.
For worse, death will touch everyone. It will irrevocably impact your life at some point while you are still alive. Talking with a good friend has brought the topic back to mind.
We’re going to explore death a little.
We’re going to do that because society is terrible at supporting people and sadly the church isn’t often much better.
But we should be.
And we can be.
We will be.
Today we’ll touch on some fundamentals, staring points so we are all in the same space.
Death cannot be fixed.
While I understand how redundant a statement that is we still try. We try to make people feel better. To fix or change what cannot be fixed. Death is permanent. It’s dark and traumatic and often our best attempts to fix the experience end up minimizing it.
So we won’t try. We won’t fix this experience. We’ll be with people in the darkness not tell them the darkness isn’t there.
Death is not purposeful.
We won’t try to render meaning where they is none. This is so important I don’t want you to miss it. Death wasn’t part of the plan. So when we talk about death we have to be careful how we speak. We need to understand the implications of the words we choose.
God can bring good from evil but it’s never His plan. He doesn’t cause evil to happen so He can do good. Evil is a part of our world and death is wholly evil. God can bring redemption out of death but it’s not the purpose of death. It’s not why it happened and God’s ability to bring good from evil doesn’t detract from how evil something is.
It happens because we live in a dark fallen world and people need to be allowed to experience that darkness without it being minimized or overly spiritualized. It’s complicated enough experience loss we don’t need to complicate it with some theological controversy over God’s involvement in death.
God doesn’t want death.
God doesn’t cause death.
God is 100% with us during the darkness, but that darkness and pain are very real.
With that as our start we’ll look at how we respond to death tomorrow. If death cannot be fixed and death isn’t part of some bigger purpose what do we say?
Or rather to start what don’t we say?