Welcome to Episode #74 of Preparing for the Inevitable – A Podcast on How to Handle Trouble, Suffering, Pain, and Death.
I am your host, Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International. This podcast will help you get ready to face the inevitable unpleasant things that will happen in your life — things like trouble, suffering, sickness, and death — the death of people you love and your own death. Trouble, suffering, and death are common threads that run throughout all of humanity. They are inescapable. You will never meet a person who has not, is not, or will not experience these terrible things in life. Yet, we attempt to hide from these inevitabilities, to pretend they don’t exist or that they won’t happen to us. Our world is filled with news of people dying, children suffering, entire government systems and organizations enduring trouble and turmoil, but we tend to see these as things that only happen to “other people” and never to us. Trouble, suffering, and death come equally to all people, of all races, from every socio-economic status, of every religion, in every country of the world. It makes us all equal. This podcast will show you how to accept these realities of life, and not just cope, but face trouble, suffering, and death in your own life and in the world with confidence, courage, class, and most of all, with faith, hope, and charity.
The Bible says in Isaiah 46:3-4: “Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb: And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you.”
The featured quote for this episode is from Billy Graham. He said, “When granted many years of life, growing old in age is natural, but growing old with grace is a choice. Growing older with grace is possible for all who will set their hearts and minds on the Giver of grace, the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Our topic for today is titled “A Culture of Resurrection, Part 14” from the book, “The Art of Dying: Living Fully into the Life to Come” by Rob Moll.
In these everyday moments we educate ourselves on how to live life walking in the Spirit, communing with God. We learn its meaning, not through words but through actions. As we all grow older, these events and activities are signposts marking the passage of life; they allow us to measure where we are in relation to where we should be. If we cannot learn to die well (to live our final days reconciled with those we leave behind and anticipating our future life with God), we cannot learn to live well. Churches that are “growing younger” don’t allow their members to do what they all must: grow older.
Caregivers will find their loads lighter, and the elderly will find the challenges of growing old less burdensome when the church lives out of a culture not of youth but of resurrection. We understand that death leads to life, and we’re more willing to pick up one another’s burdens, whether providing respite care or a weekday lunch to a woman caring for an elderly parent or visiting an old man on his deathbed.
Churchwide care for the elderly and the activities we perform when death occurs are important for two basic reasons. As Christians do these things and see them done, we make small preparations, minor adjustments over time, toward a life with God. And second, Christians know what to do, how to behave, when these challenging circumstances arrive in our own lives. When we witness friends aging well or caring well for their elderly, it provides a model for us to follow. We won’t need to figure everything out for the first time when our turn comes.
Care for the elderly and dying forms a congregation in ways youth work cannot. When we provide a ride to a homebound person or regularly visit the nursing home, it helps us all to recognize life’s limits. Perhaps most of us or our loved ones will grow old before we die, and we should be prepared to meet those unique challenges. However, care for the elderly is an important spiritual discipline for everyone, because death is in all our futures. Caring for an elder will help us face death whenever it meets us and life more faithfully in every area of our lives.
When we allow ourselves to be confronted by death, our little excuses for unfaithfulness fall away. And we are prodded toward living more in view of what’s truly important. In my own life, I’m learning to take more joy in and more care to develop those things that have the most significance. My three kids, my wife, my family and my friends–the quality of these relationships will be the measure of my life. And while I worry about my career and stress about being a provider and wonder what God has called me to in this part of my life, I know that God will bring life–whether or not I can envision what that will be today–out of my concerns. And I know that God will create meaning and goodness through my relationships with my family and those he has put around me.
If the Lord tarries His Coming and we live, we will continue looking at “A Culture of Resurrection” in our next podcast.
Let’s Pray —
Dear friend, please understand that after you die, you will be ushered into one of two places to spend eternity, Heaven or Hell. Here’s how you can be sure that you will not go to hell and suffer eternal damnation forever and rather have a home in Heaven when you die. The Bible says, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.” Here’s how you can be saved from sin and hell and have a home in Heaven when you die in more detail.
1. Accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 7:20: “For there is not a just man upon earth that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Romans 3:23 reads: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” In fact, I am the chief of sinners, so don’t think that you’re alone.
2. Accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
3. Accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” The Bible says in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
4. Accept the fact that you cannot do anything to save yourself! The Bible states in Ephesians 2: 8, 9: “For by grace are ye saved through faith: and that not of yourselves: it is a gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
5. Accept the fact that God loves you more than you love yourself, and that He wants to save you from hell. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
6. With these facts in mind, please repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and pray and ask Him to come into your heart and save you this very moment. The Bible states in the book of Romans 10:9, 13: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Dear friend, if you are willing to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation, please pray with me this simple prayer: Heavenly Father, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”