Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Everyone Lives, Everyone Dies

The thought of death terrifies some people. I have had occasion to consider death at different times in my life and it has never taken on the appearance of the Grim Reaper with his scythe. The concern of death to me is that I will miss the person that has passed on.

When I was eight years old my Grandpa Johnson took me off to the side and told me that when he died and I walked by his coffin he would wink at me. The day soon came and we were filing by his open casket. I was not concerned that he had died, I only wanted to see him wink. My mom finally had to separate a disappointed little boy from his grandfather's casket. What a great gift he gave me, as I look back on it.

As I rounded the corner on 50 and have had some life changing experiences, death and the thought of it have become more preeminent in my order of thinking. The thought of my wife dying before I do worries me more than my own demise. Insurance has become more important an issue so that my beautiful companion is taken care of in case I pass on before her. Much of my calmness concerning death has to do with my understanding and faith in an afterlife. I do not know what it would be like without that.

Living here on this earth is a different story for each of us. Some have it easier according to our definitions than others. I know that there is misery and suffering beyond our imagination on this earth, and I am happy that I have not had to deal with that. I have also come to realize that human emotions and values are spread over a spectrum of endless points. We are a complex race with a certain amount of time here on this earth. What are we supposed to do with it and is there a point to our lives? Again, I believe that there is, and I feel that I understand what that purpose is. However, for those who do not have answers to these questions there is only birth and death. We live and then we die. What we do in between along with how and why those things are, or are not important, remains a mystery to them. That would be difficult for me to live with. I am the type of person that is continually looking for answers to questions.

I love to look at the past now to see where we have come from. Finding people that have been truly happy, and then discovering the reasons why, build my faith in what I personally believe. How can we contemplate life and death and look at this world as as "per chance" and not as a creation of a divine being? I find it difficult and disappointing when I find someone that is truly an atheist. I feel bad for them, but also for all of those that they negatively influence. At the same time I can understand why they do not believe in a higher power. There has been so much blood spilled and suffering, that to believe would take some mighty answers with a convincing source. Fortunately for me I have experienced that. For that reason I am writing this in hopes that someone else can experience what I have.

Here are words of a prophet that greatly influenced me. A prophet a person designated by God to deliver His word. The prophets name in this case, is Moroni. Here is what he said on how we can attain answers to our questions.

" Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts. And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things."

There are answers to all questions. We just need to know how to ask them and then how to receive the answers. The quote above came from Moroni, who lived about 400 AD on the American continent. His people had just been completely annihilated. He wrote this promise at the end of a book named after his father, "The Book of Mormon".

I would never push this on anyone. But I can personally testify that at the age of 18, I put this to the test. I received an answer to my prayers that was absolutely and unequivocally undeniable. I remember it like it was yesterday. Did it make me perfect and have I lived a life without shame? No. I have never claimed to be better than anyone else on this earth. However, I have answers to questions that I would have never had. Good luck on your journey here. If this helps you then I am happy. If it does not then I wish you well. One thing we all have in common ---- "Everyone lives and Everyone Dies." The questions are, what happened before we came here, what is the purpose of the part in-between, and is there more that comes after this life?