One destination…

 

Two men. Two very different lives. One destination.

As I go about this journey called life, I meet people of different ages, races, religion, socio-economical status and most importantly, experiences.

I love to learn the stories from those I meet. We all have one…the story of how we got to where we currently are.

Over the past several years, my path has intersected with a couple I met at my church. I have worked beside them in various ministries. When he had a medical issue, I was able to provide comfort while my husband helped him to seek medical help. And in our encounters, I was able to hear parts of their story…a story that included a love lost, reunited. I was able to hear how their discipline and faith in Jesus Christ had gotten them through many years of marriage.

When he passed away after a lengthy illness, there was a time of expected mourning by those he had left behind. But during the visitation there were few tears. He had a full life, even in it’s last days. He loved the Lord with all of his heart and he permeated that love everywhere he went.

The tears were absent not because he wasn’t loved and wouldn’t be missed, but everyone in attendance knew he was meeting his Maker.

In more recent months, I’ve sat in the rooms of recovery and heard many stories from alcoholics and addicts, struggling to do the next right thing. Stories similar to mine.

One young man I had seen in the rooms had the biggest, bluest eyes you can imagine. Standing an easy 6′ with large donut earrings separating the cartilage on his ears, you’d have to be blind to miss him. He sought attention through his alternative appearance and sat with other young men the same.

When he spoke, I was able to hear his battle. i was able to see the intelligence his appearance tended to hide. I was able to see the heart of a young man who desperately wanted to break an addiction but had troubles surrendering.

On one occasion, I was able to speak with him one on one about God. The topic for that particular evening had to do with prayer. he felt judged by the world for communicating with God in a different way then society deemed “normal”. His praying consisted of writing letters to God. After the meeting and hearing him verbalize this, I pulled him aside and reassured him that as long as he is indeed in communication with God, how he does it is not important. It was a brief conversation but he seemed genuinely grateful for it. I never saw him again after that…until I saw him in his coffin.

That visitation was filled with tears and even one family member drinking straight vodka to find comfort. Was it because he was loved and would be missed? or because his addiction abruptly ended his life at just 19 years old? Was it because he was meeting his maker?

Two men. Two very different lives. One destination.

Two years ago, meeting my maker would not have ended well for me. Today the thought excites me. Today I know the end of my story…and it is good. But that won’t happen if I quit living for my maker.

When I die, I expect my memorial to conclude with Prince belting “Let’s Go Crazy” over the church intercom, with everyone in attendance celebrating my life in song and dance knowing I am meeting my maker.

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