Friday, November 02, 2007

Where, O death, is your sting?

Show me, O LORD, my life's end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life." -- Psalm 39:4

(photo grabbed from

This is the time of the year when we put aside everything else and remember our dearly departed. During my growing up years in rural Negros, we would have "reunion" every Nov. 2. All Soul's Day is one of the top three most important days for our very traditional family. The first of course, is Christmas, which also happens to be our father's birthday. Next is the Holy Week, the time of the year where everybody in the family is busy dressing up our centuries' old Santo Entierro.

But Nov. 2 always gave me a different kind of excitement. It was like a big annual reunion not only for our family but for the whole town as well. We get to see our town's "Who's who" at the only cemetery. Everybody who mattered would troop with their families to pay respects to the dearly departed. (Sadly, my children, born and raised in Manila, missed this family tradition.)

As I grew older, All Soul's Day became a reminder of how short life is. My mother, for instance, left us when I was barely 17. She wasn't even sickly.

One of my cousins died of aneurism when she was just a little over 30. Two of my husband's close friends in college also died in their early 30s. Among my father's 11 siblings, only 5 of them are left. Most of my uncles died at 50ish or 60ish, except for their youngest, Uncle Benjamin, who died while he was a baby.

Talking about death is a little morbid. But then again, it is the surest destination for all of us.

Which makes me reflect: how have I lived my life? When I leave for the great beyond, what will people say of me? Of my life?
Have I made other people's lives better? Have I lived it according to God's plan?

Everyday, I pray to God to help me live according to His plans. For apart from Him, there is no reason for me to live longer. If I don't consciously seek to please God, then my life is futile. Be far from it that I live according to my own will. Yet, I struggle with it everyday.

Thank God, we have Jesus. When we accept Him as our Lord and Savior, we are no longer bound by our sinfulness. He shed His blood for us so that in His death, we will live.

Now, I am no longer afraid of passing on to eternity. It is no longer about me, no longer about my own efforts to be good. It is about how Jesus saved me. Because of His death and resurrection, we too, will be resurrected with Him.

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