It was a sunny, sad day in 1982—the day after my husband’s funeral. I had gone alone to Bill’s grave, hardly knowing why. As with Mary Magdalene who visited Jesus’ tomb, the risen Lord was waiting for me. He impressed the words of Philippians 1:21 on my mind, still numbed by Bill’s untimely death from cancer.
I wove my prayer around the words of that verse: “Lord, how often I’ve heard Bill testify, ‘For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.’ Well, your servant has now died, an untold loss for us, an unspeakable gain for him. I know, Lord, that I too will die someday and enter that gain. But right now I’m still alive. I know I must not live in the past, precious as it is. For to me, to live is You!’”
As I turned to leave, I knew I had prayed a foundational prayer. Much recovery and rebuilding lay before me, but beneath me was the only firm foundation on which to build—Jesus Christ.
Has a loved one’s death or the fear of your own death tested your foundation? Let Paul’s words, written in the face of death, and Jesus’ words to Mary encourage you to offer a foundational prayer of your own. Then begin to rebuild your life on the risen Christ!
It matters not how dark the way,
How thick the clouds from day to day,
God will direct in all we do
If we take time to pray it through. —Mead
Life's best outlook is a prayerful uplook!