When I Die Young (Or Old)
When I die young, please don’t be sad. Know that I am finally free from sin. That beloved and yet hated vice, that secret and yet public sin, that long-fought or recently discovered battle – all are done away with and gone.
When I die young, remember it’s okay to cry. Death is our enemy, and we were created to live forever. It is unnatural to die and even more unnatural to die young. Yet even as you cry, remember that death – although our enemy – is a defeated enemy.
When I die young, I will be forgotten. Although my husband and children will remember me, my grandchildren will only hear stories about me. And my great-grandchildren may not even know my name. When I am forgotten here on earth, know that I am remembered by God. My name is written in His book, and I will never be forgotten by Him.
When I die old, please don’t be sad. Know that I am finally free from pain. The aches and pains that plagued me, the diseases that gradually assailed me, the knowledge of my finitude that always pained me – all are done away with and gone.
When I die old, remember it’s okay to cry. You mourn the loss of me here on this earth. You mourn the separation of the body from the soul. Yet even as you cry, remember that Jesus Christ, the firstborn from the dead, has gone ahead. We have His flesh in heaven – a guarantee of the resurrection of our bodies.
When I die old, I will be forgotten. I am not famous and I have not changed the world. Yet I have not been called to be remembered or to change the world; I have been called to be faithful to the tasks God has appointed to me. I have been called to keep the faith.
When I die young or old, give me Jesus. When I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for He is with me. When I die, none of you can go with me. Yet Jesus has not only gone before, He also promises to be with me through the bitter end – and afterwards He will receive me to glory.
Each day I live is one day closer to the day of my death. I do not know whether I will die young or old. But I do know that God has fashioned all of my days from eternity past. I have trusted Him in life and I will trust Him in my death. And when I die, I will finally see Him face to face. I will finally hear the words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” When I die is when I will finally live.