One of the roles I am called on to fulfill is helping people deal with end-of-life issues. And that’s a difficult place to be in. As a Christian who believes in the supernatural, and who has seen many miracles of healing in people’s lives, how do we accept defeat when death finally comes?
And yet, on the other hand, we are expected to believe that there is a heaven and a Savior waiting to receive us into Father’s House. Do we prolong life or do we eagerly anticipate its end? When doctors say that a person’s condition is ‘terminal’ (incurable and ending in imminent death) do we rejoice or fall into hopelessness, or something in between?
An ethics question that we’ll be hearing more about in coming days will be about helping people pass from this life to the next. Is it really life if a life-support machine is necessary to keep body organs functioning. When (and how) does a loving family ‘pull the plug’ on a loved one? These are questions that physicians and ministers, and families, are asking. And we each need a signed living will down in writing someplace.
Psalm 23:6 sums it up well for a believer: “Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life,and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” I win if I stay, and I win if I leave.