30 July 2010
Where is your end?
The small Jewish cemetery in Eudora, Kansas, near Lawrence, and just outside Kansas City, is pictured here. And the story in the Lawrence Daily Journal World says, "The modest burial ground was established in the 1850s, shortly after the first Jewish settlers arrived in the area." It's not very populated, as most Jewish people in the area choose to buy plots in Kansas City, but due to its being run by Reform Jews, and that it allows interfaith couples to be buried there, it might have appeal to the many messianic Jews who abound in the Midwest.
The Journal World reports, "The cemetery is meant for people who were members of the Lawrence Jewish Community Center at the time of their death. The cemetery operates under reform practices, meaning that people of other faiths who have a Jewish member in their families have also been buried there. If a Jewish person wishes to be buried there, but he or she is not a member of the Community Center at the time of death, the person’s family is required to pay $720, a sum equal to a year’s worth of dues."
Not a bad ending.
Of course, it's not really the ending, is it?
The Bible says each of us will die, "and then after this comes the judgment." (Hebrews 9.27) So the ending will be the judgment. And then, of course, that's not the end either. Going through justice leads us to the final resting place. So in a way, the cemetery is really a triage, a waiting area, for the next place. The lobby is important, though, isn't it? It's the last place most folks will have to attend to you. Only a few relatives will ever visit your grave after the activities of the final days of a person. If the person is ill, especially after an extended illness, death for many sounds like a wish.
Even so, the illness, then the death, and then the rush to bury. OK< burial, and a bit of shiva or shloshim or even an 11-month headstone laying. But after that, who really remembers people?
Here's a real hope.
In Psalm 42 and 43 (probably originally a single psalm): Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him For the help of His presence.
Psa. 130.7 O Israel, hope in the LORD; For with the LORD there is lovingkindness, And with Him is abundant redemption.
And Jeremiah said, "O LORD, the hope of Israel, All who forsake Thee will be put to shame. Those who turn away on earth will be written down, Because they have forsaken the fountain of living water, even the LORD." (chapter 17.13)
And it's all summed up in Y'shua, God's eternal son, as we read, "God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Messiah Jesus in you, the hope of glory." (Colossians 1.27)
He brings hope.
He's worth all the hope we place in him.
Everyone who trusts in him will not be disappointed.
Does that include you?