A pastor-to-be theological student gave his sorrowful yet hopeful talk, in the funeral of his two new born sons who died before the delivery. Monday morning at St. Barnabas. Chilling cold with drizzling rain.
It is the second funeral I have attended since I came to Australia 14 years ago. However, it is very different to the first that I went to two years ago, which was a Taoist service for a Vivian's family friend. The event in itself was very sad for the family. It drives people to tears when we heard about the situation and the pain that they have to go through. Yet, they have demonstrated great comfort that they have received from the Lord. Firm in Christ they stood, and trust in God that they would see their children again. It is such an encouragement to those around.
Last Sunday in Mandarin Bible Fellowship, we studied 1 Thessalonian 4, where Paul instructed the church to encourage each other with these words (1 Thess 4:18), so that they would not grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. There will indeed be resurrection at the coming of the Lord. He himself will come down from heaven, and lift up rose who has died in him. In heaven, we will see each other again, and this time for eternity. For Christians, death is not the end, but marks the beginning of a brand new life which Christ Jesus has redeemed for us.
Would I be reminded and encouraged by these words if I also happen to loose my loved one? Have I used these words to encourage others when they are facing the difficulties?