Another unlike another

I think of it as “death creep,” the point in life at which I lose one to two friends in my age cohort a year. I learned this morning that the Lord harvested one of my friends last night, by means of a heart attack, quite unexpectedly. I think she had the most perfect heart I’ve ever known.

I say “unexpectedly” because I think most of us are too stupid to expect death. We fear it superstitiously, thinking somehow the fear will repel its advance. It’s only by the mercy of memory that we are able to forget about death for any time at all.

But my deceased friend knows more than I, because she sees, first hand, the reign of grace through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 5:21, ESV). What happiness! And providentially, another friend, Heidi, remarked just the other day that a view of a cemetery reminds one to think with some constancy of the resurrection. How sad for someone who would instead find the view “creepy.”

I find the loss of each friend unlike any other. But very slowly, I am beginning to find more joy in loss. The joy does not lessen the sense of loss, or not very much; nor does it fully displace the shock and sorrow. But joy comes alongside these other sensibilities, like the dawn, that so inevitably displaces the darkness.

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3 Comments

Filed under People, Places, & Things

3 responses to “Another unlike another

  1. mo

    Lauren, Your words often move me, but this post was so wonderful and full of love for your friends that I read it twice. Your sentence “I think she had the most perfect heart I’ve ever known” is so beautiful I almost gasped when I read it. I hope when I die someone can write a little essay like this.
    mo
    Do you mind if I put a link to this post on my facebook page or my blog, I think reading this will help a lot of people.

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    • Dear Mo, post it where you will, and to God be the glory.

      This dear lady leaves many voids: she was a friend to everyone in our church; she also played the piano with our hymn singing, and had other responsibilies in our church and community as well. She loved fellowship. She was a treasure and we all miss her. Our loss truly is her gain, and the Lord’s.

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  2. Heidi

    Oh Lauren, I am so sorry to hear of your friend. Loss here is terribly hard. Yet we share here too in the joy of those who are in the presence of fullness of joy.

    ‘It is not death, O Christ, to die for thee / Nor is that silence of a silent land / That speaks thy praise so all may understand. / Darkness of death makes Thy dear lovers see / Thyself . . .’ (Christina Rossetti) I pray God will give you much comfort in hers.

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