TITLE: Victory In Death
By William Cox
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Victory In Death
"O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?" --1 Corinthians 15:55
On Friday afternoon, I had the unfortunate responsibility to perform the memorial service for a newborn baby. The father is a good friend of mine who had twin girls who were born extremely premature, and one lasted five days until the time came for her to pass on. It's an amazing story, and my friend has given me permission to share it.
Two weeks ago, he came to me asking me for prayer. (I wrote about it in an earlier blog post). He asked Jesus to come into his heart and to save him, and because the Lord is faithful to all who call upon Him, my friend was saved the moment he believed. THE VERY NEXT DAY his wife went into labor. He had known for quite sometime that he was having twin girls, and of course, we teased him about "not knowing he had it in him". The girls were a couple months premature, and to show how small they were, he took a picture of them and laying down next to a dollar bill. They were barely longer than it, and I was amazed at how tiny they both were. Both in incubators, they were struggling along until the dreadful news came five days after birth...one had passed away.
I hadn't spoken to him about anything until the day before the service when he asked me to perform it. I asked him how he was doing, how his girl is, and what he's thinking about concerning God in all of this. He was surprisingly peaceful and he told me, "I don't blame God for anything. Things in life happen and I accept that. I know it wasn't His fault".
Because God sees the end from the beginning, this situation didn't catch Him off guard, and He wasn't up in heaven biting His fingernails. The day before this all took place, God saved my friend and gave Him His peace...all before the storm. Jesus said, "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly". (John 10:10) Christ gave His life for ours, even as Satan tries to take ours away. In the grand scheme of things, we sometimes can't understand why these "tragedies" take place, but in the midst of the storm, God gives us the "peace that passes all understanding". Under normal (unbelieving) circumstances, the grief and pain of losing a child would be one of the worst calamities to ever attack a person's heart. But when we live in faith, we understand that death is not the end in Christ...it's the start of a life everlasting. As Paul wrote, "For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain". (Philippians 1:21)
Through it all, Jesus was there with His love, His comfort, and His grace. My friend knows in his heart that "all things work together for good to those who love God". (Romans 8:28) And while all of this appeared to be such a devasting week, appearences are not what they seem. That little girl is in the arms of her Savior, and one day, her father will join her through his faith.
William L Cox
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