Archives For Death

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Do you see them, there upon the horizon?

Clouds are rising.

The wind howls with a banshee screech.

The Earth shudders beneath your feet.
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Creation groans, gasping out a last sigh:

You are Noah, and the end is nigh.

Will you weather the storm, afloat upon a boat called hope?

Or will you drown, sucked down in a whirlpool tide of trials and cares?

Life and death lay before you, Noah.

What will you do? Where, who, is your ark?

Abortion Is Good

randomlychad  —  January 7, 2014 — 7 Comments

For who, exactly?

For the girls who suffer guilt the rest of their lives?

For the babies who never had a say?

For the women who can’t conceive later in life?

For childless couples waiting to adopt, hoping to become a family?

Tell me again just who abortion is good for?

Oh, yeah: doctors, clinics, Planned Parenthood:

Because it makes them fat stacks of mad cash.

It’s not about the girls, it’s not about women’s rights.

It’s about money, pure and simple.

“Greed is good,” said Gordon Gekko. But is it? When it causes people to value cash more than human life? (“What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world, but loses his soul?”). Remember when life had incalculable value? Ten years ago, no one would have batted an eye about a mother in Texas being kept alive because her baby deserved a fighting chance. Now, it’s news. Now, it’s about women’s rights.

It’s a smokescreen. “Every child a wanted child” is a BS PR campaign. Yes, teen pregnancy is hard, but all throughout history woman married young, and had many, many children. Not all of whom lived to reach adulthood. It’s only as society modernized, and great emphasis was placed on education and opportunity, that teen pregnancy was declared to be a scourge, a travesty… Because it makes life hard? “Young lady, you don’t want to limit your opportunities, you know. But have sex. Have as much as you want. Just use protection. But if you have an “oopsie” just know that we’re there for you, okay? We have pills, forceps, vacuums, and saline solution. Completely painless, and without consequence. All because we care. Have a nice life.”

Whoever said that life wasn’t supposed to be hard straight up lied.

It’s really the culture (of convenience) that makes it harder than it needs to be:

Look at Mary, the mother of Jesus. Impregnated by the Holy Spirit at possibly thirteen. She knew where babies came from (“Since I have never been with a man”). So did Joseph her espoused (“who had a mind to put her away quietly”).

Not to mention Mary’s parents (who aren’t mentioned in Scripture). How did they feel about this? What if abortion had been an option in their day?

Where would that leave the rest of us?

Or what about evangelist James Robison? Who, the story goes, was born of rape? Or Jaycee Dugard, who has two beautiful children borne of a very bad situation.

Tell them that abortion is a good thing.

Point is: God is in the redemption business. And even the darkest, blackest things are never beyond His reach.

We just have to give Him the chance. Like young Mary did all those years ago.

What do you think?

'ABORTION // Fetus & Moron' photo (c) 2010, Raquel Baranow - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

'Zombie Portrait' photo (c) 2012, Randy Salgado - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ The Gospel? From decaying zombie flesh? Bear with me. The zombie craze began, arguably, with George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead in 1968. That movie almost singlehandedly gave birth to the zombie genre as we know it today.

All along, the films have been full of sly social commentary, or crackling with stinging satire. At its (undead) heart, the genre is essentially a polemic against rampant consumerism. It’s a critique on the quintessentially American way of life. By confronting us with the brutality of (un)death, it shows us a number of uncomfortable things about how we live now.

Zombies are flesh and blood(less) metaphors for:

Us.

They are shambling mirrors of our souls, for as they are we could be. And each one of them used to be as we are: alive, with hopes, dreams, families. They are the still-walking reminders that death comes for us all. Much as we try, we cannot avoid it. Much like death itself, zombies cannot be bargained with, cannot be bought, cannot be be dissuaded from a single-minded purpose:

The destruction and consumption of all that is living.

The singularly uncomfortable truth is:

I am going to die. You are going to die. We are all going to die. And we have to reckon with that. As Malcolm McDowell (as Dr. Sorrin) said in Star Trek: Generations, “Time is the fire in which we burn.”

Of the horror genre, zombie fiction (film, comics, books, etc.) is especially well-suited to confront us with this grim reality, and in so confronting help us deal with it. But we have to be willing to face our fears.

This often means looking at the dark heart which beats within each of us. Because, though we are alive, we are dead. We are the living dead. And it is into this land of the dead that Jesus burst onto the scene. He, redolent with the smell of life, came to confront us in our decay.

He came, telling the truth:

You are dead.

We didn’t like His message. It made us uncomfortable. Surely, we were just fine? We were upright–walking, talking, observing the Law.

Didn’t matter.

We. Were. The. Zombies.

And the only way out, paradoxically, is death:

We must die to self, putting to death our members, and daily receive with meekness the engrafted Word which is able to save our souls. Even so, our bodies will one day die. Our flesh will see decay. To us, the dead-alive, Jesus says:

“I am the resurrection and the life, he that believeth in Me though he were dead yet shall he live. He that liveth and believeth in Me shall never die. Believest thou this?”

Do you?

Funeral Thoughts

randomlychad  —  October 11, 2013 — 4 Comments
'Coffin rest' photo (c) 2010, Tim Green - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

My work day today began with a funeral. It was for a man both well-loved, and well-respected in our community. Numerous nice things were said of him, photos and memories were shared. Though I didn’t know him well, it was touching.

Of all that was said, the one thing which stood head and shoulders above the rest was the statement that “death comes for us all.” We can’t bargain with it, cheat it, get out of it.

We don’t know when it’s coming. Only that it is.

Which was why, while I was supposed to be there memorializing the deceased, I thought of me. When my time comes, will people remember me fondly? Will I be likewise known as a man who loved well, and gave his all?

Will you? Will you be remembered as a man, or woman, who loved, who worked, who invested your life in others? We don’t know the number of our days, how long, or short, our lives will be. What matters–the only thing that matters–is what we do with what we’ve got.

Of the man who passed on, it was said that rather than being someone who found fault, he was a man of “remedies.”
This reminds me of greater man, One Who once walked the sands of Israel. Who said to the woman caught in adultery, “Go, and sin no more.” He was not just a man of remedies, solving the problems (as necessary as that is) which crossed his desk, but rather He Himself was the remedy for our sin-sick hearts.

How can we, by how we live, go and do likewise? No matter our vocation, we are each of us called to be His hands and feet.

Today.

I leave you with the words of an old hymn of the church:

“Only one life, twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”

Science Can

randomlychad  —  September 4, 2013 — 7 Comments

Science can

Tell us how much a heart weighs

(Down to the gram)

Chart the process of decay

(This, the measure of a man?)

But it can’t tell us where the soul goes:

For life is more than chemicals