Tuesday, April 7, 2009

What Will They Say About Me at My Funeral?

It’s never fun to bury a loved one, but it’s something that all of us go through at one time or another. This week, my family made the trip to Groom, Texas where we buried Audra’s granddad, Bobby Cornett. I knew Papaw for 13 years, but it was interesting to sit through his funeral service and hear them talk about him; stories and tales that I was completely unaware of. I knew him as the funny old guy who had never beat around any bush and who frequently took naps during conversations and football games. He was the grandparent who never missed a holiday (or holiday meal) with the grandkids and great grandkids and always went back for seconds! He was an awesome grandparent…

But he had a whole separate life away from us. He was a retired Postmaster of 41 years in a town with less than 1,000 people in it; a town that he was a lifetime resident and knew literally everything about everybody. He was very involved in his church and was a huge supporter of the student programs and schools in Groom. Everybody knew Bobby and they either loved him or they couldn’t stand him… that’s just who he was. But it was also common knowledge that although he wasn’t a perfect person, he was still saved by grace and knew Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior. There were some great things said about Bobby, but the one thing that was echoed throughout the service is his great love for God and his continual pursuit to know him better.
Whether I’m doing a funeral or just attending, I always leave asking the same question… “What will they say about me at my funeral?” Whether you’re saved or completely lost, this question should give you the desire to live a better life. It should give you the desire to make wise decisions, spend your time differently, prioritize things a little differently and ultimately pursue things that are eternal rather than temporal.

Funerals are also a great reminder that you can’t take anything with you. Not the big stuff, the small stuff, the good stuff, the money, the sentimental things… nothing. It really just puts things into perspective and I believe so will the following questions:
  • Why do we work so hard to achieve things that won’t last?
  • Why do we spend money we don’t have, for things we don’t need, to impress people we don’t even like?
  • Why don’t we love people enough to engage them in critical conversations that have eternal consequences?
  • If my funeral was today, what would be said? What can I do in the future to change the answer to that question?

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