Sunday, 28 June 2020

Death in 2020

Scripture:  Psalm 116 v 15: "Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints."

Yesterday afternoon a dear fellow-labourer in our prayer ministry let me know that his father's sufferings were finally over.  He had passed away not from the Covid-19 virus but after a stroke last year put him in the infirmary.

Because of strict lockdown rules concerning old age care homes, they could not visit with his parents, nor can they be there now to comfort his mother.  There will be no funeral, just a cremation.  This is the new death mode many have had to face.

Peter was not his biological dad, but he was his real dad who changed the way his life had been before, from fear to love, stability and balance.  And if its a sad and lonely ending of a good life, Jesus has now welcomed Peter to His Heavenly home.

It caused my friend a few hours after the passing of Peter to post these texts that have moved me spiritually and I need to share them with you all.

"Thanks family. He really was a better father figure than my biological father. I appreciate that Jesus arranged that he was that for me. I have felt that I was missing a 'real' family that I belonged to and that I was always an 'addition' to someone else's family. It cuts into one's identity... Well all I can say is that if the adopted family is better than the one you are born into, then the Lord Jesus must have had compassion and His generosity has no bounds and I appreciate that a lot. Thank You Jesus!!!

I guess the lesson is, we are all given a chance and if we don't rise to the occasion, Jesus has to make another plan. Lord Jesus please help me comply with all You want.

What I can say is that life is totally useless without Jesus. This carnal life is completely doomed for destruction. Jesus' life in us is the only hope we have.

Jesus, we have come to the realization that we are not capable of living this life successfully. We are but a breath, like grass, here the one day and gone the next. Lord Jesus, only You can give our lives meaning. Thank You for Your love and please grant us Your life so that our lives are meaningful to You."

Our God gives grace to the humble, and He surely has to this dear brother.  If we can face the loss of a loved one with this depth of consciousness of Jesus and the desire to exalt Him so highly then Death in 2020 loses its sting and we gain a glimpse of Heaven.

When we see news stories out of England and realise the same things are happening everywhere, of the elderly being left to die because younger people are given hospital and ICU space, that's worse than sad.

In one hospital in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, the staff are either sick themselves or refusing to work.  There are six doctors and one nurse trying to do their best and failing miserably as people who might have been saved die all around them.

This virus is like a bat out of Hell for the havoc it has  caused and the worst has not yet been seen.  All we can offer to the afflicted and vulnerable is the hope of salvation in Jesus Christ.  There is no other name, no other person who died for our sins, to gain the Father's forgiveness for the whole human race.

Acts 2 v 36 - 39: "Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
37  Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
38  Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
39  For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call."

Our Father only sees two types of human beings on planet Earth.  The saved and the unsaved.  The saved are called saints and He delights in their deaths because they are safely home with Him.  The unsaved are the lost souls its our job to reach and with whom we must share the truth about Jesus.

It's not about colour, race, creed, nationality or status in God's eyes.  All are welcome to change their minds and believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that He died for them to be free of every burden.  That is what being born again means.  To be given a second chance to do it right.

We are now cut off from the dying in 2020 but we can still pray for the Lord in His mercy to make Himself real to them.  To give them an opportunity to make right with the world and with God so they may spend eternity in Heaven where we can also be with them forever.

We can also pray for them to be healed from this awful virus and many more have recovered than have died.  But let us not lose those who are not going to come back from this, let's us ask the Lord to guide us in our prayers for them all.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, there are many dying, some needlessly, from this unseen virus.  Lord we pray that You will have mercy on those who do not know You.  Please reveal Yourself to them and give them all they need to know to change them from sinners to saints.  Pour out Your Holy Spirit upon them to heal as many as possible and change the direction of those who are dying.  In Jesus's name.  Amen.