The Cemetery

I went to our neighbor’s funeral this past week.  If ever there’s a reminder that death is real, it has to be when you look at a body laying in the casket.  Then you realize of a certainty that your talkative neighbor will never say one more word to you.  It suddenly hits you that you’ll never go outside during those long summer days and see him mowing his immaculate lawn, or wave at him when you head outside to get the mail.  You’ll never again see him on this earth. 

We walked slowly through the cemetery, making our way back to our van afterward; though maybe we were more focused on the grave stones, each bearing the name of someone who had made way to eternity ahead of me.  

It seemed almost too simple a marking to remember an entire life lived.  Each name I read signified a person who was at one time very much like myself…they had hopes and dreams, experienced joy and pain, and felt deeply.  But I know nothing of that.  To me, they are simply a name, their lives remembered only by a date of birth and a date of death, and perhaps by a few words summarizing their life, but nothing more.  I may have walked the past the grave of a talented violinist, but that was completely unknown to me.  My eyes may have glanced upon the name of an accomplished writer, but surely I don’t know. 

Many years from now, people may glance down at a grave stone bearing the name of this writer and what will they read?  Not much more will be found besides a couple dates remembering the number of years I spent on this earth.  Yet, there is One who remembers all and though we may have long passed from this world, our lives are recorded before Him.  He knows whether our lives were spent in service to Him or whether they were frittered away on passing pleasures of a passing world.  Your accomplishments matter not if your life is not used up in services to Christ.  

Before the One who remembers all, what is my life’s aim?  What is yours?

Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.
And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be,
If the lamp of my life has been burned out for Thee
~C. T. Studd

{photo credit: Microsoft Office Clipart}


12 thoughts on “The Cemetery

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  1. Melissa and I walk through grave yards as often as we can. It is a great reminder of death and it is a quiet place to think. It is good to be reminded of these things.

    1. That sounds like a profitable thing to do. Other than this past week, I honestly can’t remember the last time I walked in a grave yard, but I can see how it would be good. We need to be reminded of these things, as you said.

  2. Wow. I Know I have seen death several times now, but I don’t believe I have ever quite seen such a true reality that you have mentioned. You are so right, it makes you think about what your doing, what your focus is, and where your headed. I want to thank you for such a wonderful reminder to keep focus on the only thing that matters. “God”.

    1. Thank you for sharing, Ashly. I’m very thankful if this post was an encouragement to you as we strive to keep our fixed upon the Lord.

  3. Good thoughts,Amy!
    We just attended a funeral last week (Thursday the 14th) as well! It was a 17 yr. old boy from out church who had special needs and health problems…He is sure to be missed,everyone loved him,and he loved babies,and was a very sweet little (very short)Negro boy. I went to school with him for a number of years and to see him lying in a casket really shows how short life is! But we are all happy for him,he said he wanted to go Home…he almost died in 2002,and he lived way beyond the doctor’s expectations-until 2011!

    1. Oh, Alison, I’m sorry to hear about that. It sounds like you all will miss this boy in your church. What a blessing, though, that he was ready to go home! Thanks for sharing this.

  4. We had a walk around a cemetry when my great-grandmother died. I had similar thoughts then, but thank you for the encouraging words, that the LORD remebers.


    1. You’re welcome, Meggie. The Lord does remember, and that’s certainly something I need to remember much more often in my own life.

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