Thursday, September 26, 2013

Disgruntled Customer

I got to watch my friend's funeral today, thanks to modern technology.  

I couldn't help but wonder how many of the tears we shed at funerals are really about ourselves.

It is terrifying to think that we are so vulnerable and small, and that we could simply drop dead one day, with no warning, before our babies are grown and safely navigating the waters of the world.  

Listening to the commonly-spoken words of the pastor offered no comfort to me.  

"Jesus has conquered death."  Yeah, except no.  Because my friend is dead and her son doesn't have his mother any more.

"Your mom will be with you all the days of your life."  Yes, everything she imparted will be there, but there is still going to be a cavernous void where a loving mother should be.

"She is home where she belongs."  Yeah, except no.  Mothers belong with their babies.  Children need their parents.  Frankly, if I die before I get to see each of my children safely grown, I will be one seriously disgruntled customer!  I will not be home.  I will have been painfully severed from my home and my heart.  Honestly, I cannot imagine heaven being good enough to warrant calling me off the job of motherhood.  I am already doing what I was made for.  Eternity can wait for me.  I'll catch up eventually.

"She has started *her real life*"  Frankly, if someone were to tell my children that I've gotten to start my REAL life once I was removed from them, I would be pissed.  THIS IS MY REAL LIFE.  This is the life God gave me.  This is what I do.  It is real.  Really, really real.  And it matters.  It matters a lot.  The here and now is our space, people.  Why are we encouraged to think otherwise?

I think that, though well-meaning, so many of these sayings end up diminishing the incredible loss that people have experienced.

A child is now motherless.
A man is now a widower.
A sister has lost her sister.
Parents have buried their child.
Friends are left with a huge loss.

No talk of "our heavenly home" can diminish the depth of the loss.  I feel concerned that perhaps the children of dead parents hear these things and feel that their loss doesn't really count, in light of eternity.

Honestly, hearing cliches and platitudes at funerals make me think that if I die young I better DIY like I always do, because that's the way I roll.  "If you want something done right....."  Seriously....everyone would walk into my funeral and they'd get a big screen of ME telling them what I actually think.

Death stinks.

I have not had enough time.

At the very least, I want to finish the job with my kids.

I am a disgruntled customer.  I want my money back.

Heaven is great, but I would have rather been on the 90-year plan for getting here.

Now, if I do get to be on the 90-year plan, I'll be ready with a different message.  OK?

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