It has been a season of losses. I've been reminded of the importance of knowing how to respond, and how not to.
On April 13, 2005, Richard Lischer's 33-year-old son, Adam, phoned his dad. The cancer had spread throughout Adam's body.
We’re not in the sort of culture where “my dad died over a year ago” is an excuse. But when I speak to other people who have lost loved ones, they say it takes two to three years before the wounds heal. I wonder why there is such a disconnect between our personal experience and our expectation of others.
Regular churchgoing does not make you a friend of death. But if you sit in the pews long enough, you cannot help getting acquainted.
When I became a student pastor I had no idea what I was getting into. The first thing that happened after we moved into the tiny parsonage was that Johnny Johnson died.
Our teacher cautions us that the corpse pose is the most difficult of all yoga postures to master, but after an hour’s exertion in warrior pose, downward-facing dog and cobra, the prospect of relaxing horizontally on one’s yoga mat brings both relief and the impertinent question, “How hard can it be?” Fascinated, I report to my husband, “Every day at the conclusion of yoga class we practice dying.” “That’s interesting,” he says, trying to share my enthusiasm. “It’s kind of like Lent,” I venture. "Lent is when we’re supposed to practice dying, right?”