Mk 7 :31-37
The Good Life
As a hospice chaplain, I am often asked to sit with a loved one who is dying. One night I sat with a 96 year old woman, as she breathed her way into God’s light. She had lived, according to others, a “good life.” Sitting there throughout the night I had a chance to meet many of the caregivers who had come to love this dear woman.
Those experiences always stop me in my tracks because it challenges me to review my life thus far. What will be said of me, when the time comes for another to sit by my bed as I breathe my way into God’s light? Will it be the scenario of an old woman who has lived a full life? Will it be one of a younger person trying to understand God’s ways? Will I meet the dying process with trust and courage or fear and doubt?
The reading from Isaiah doesn’t answer how I will be or how you will be, but it does answer how God will be…how God is. The Buddhists have a saying, “Today is a good day to die.” In saying this they seek to let go of those things which keep them from being present to today. In essence they are also saying, “Today is a good day to live.”
This week I shall seek to live my daily life in a way that helps me practice being present. I shall seek to live in such a way that I can dare to be-
“the stream that burst forth in the desert, the blind whose eyes have been open, and the deaf whose ears are cleared. Let today be the day that others say by my presence, that “I was strong and feared not, trusting in my God who came with vindication and with divine recompense to save me.”