Wait a minute! We are talking about how to be happy and less than 50 pages in we are talking about death?

As I read this chapter I have two thoughts I want to briefly share with you.

First, I had what I can only explain as an amazing gift from God. A cousin of mine was diagnosed with cancer and there were enough signs that no cure would be found and as she told me when the diagnosis was made in the spring – “I can still buy green bananas, but I shouldn’t bother investing in a new winter coat”. I was given the gift of being able to walk beside her as she lived out her dying. I was able to be a witness to her faith, her complete surrender to God's will. It was a time of peace and grace-filled moments that have touched my life in profound ways. Often when I would leave her at the end of a day I would pray that God would increase my faith so that when/if I must walk my final days in a similar way I could do so with the faith and grace that she had.

My second thought in reading this chapter took me back to my counseling days. I would have all my clients complete an assignment where they were to write their own eulogy. I would have them share this eulogy with their group or individually with me. They would stand up and read aloud the things they would want others to remember about them. May of my clients would say things like – “he was a great guy, I loved being around him”, or “look at what he accomplished in his life”. After they completed this I would ask them are you living your life in a manner that people will authentically say this about you if you died tomorrow. Many of them had to admit that if they died tomorrow they didn’t want to know what people said.

We will all die one day, so today take a moment to consider your own eulogy. Are you living the life that you want people to remember? Are you the person you want to be remembered as? Look back at that list of wishes of dying people (page 50) is there one or two things on there you want to start changing today – or make as your Lent practice this year?