Tuesday, December 27, 2011

End Times

The end of December is traditionally the time to pause and take stock of the year just past. We soon will have an opportunity to watch highlight reels that feature the best of the year's events in sports, politics, economics and entertainment. We can relive the best and the worst that 2011 offered. Such is the nature of December, when we end one year and look forward to the start of another.

This past week, however, gave me pause to ponder a different slant on the end of the year. I received word my uncle had passed away. I attended the funeral and was struck by the realization that he was the last living member of my father's generation. When I returned home from his funeral I received word a good friend of ours was called home -- suddenly and unexpectedly. I was making plans to attend his funeral, when I was admitted into the hospital myself -- again very unexpected and sudden.

It was then I began to ponder how ready I was for the end times. What if I were to be called home right now? Have I provided for my family? Will there be funds to pay the bills? Have I made my wishes known about the disposition of my things? Will my heirs know what charities I want to support with my estate? Will my wife know my funeral wishes: hymns, scripture readings and such? Will someone have enough information to fill in the obituary items like my date of birth, place of birth, survivors, those that preceded me in death, final resting place, etc.? What will people remember about me?

I know it is not something guys -- or anybody for that matter -- like to think about, especially when we are younger, but it is something we should plan for now. Perhaps it's time to pause and take stock of your past and where your future may be going. Now is the time to attend those details that help and comfort your family.

One thought struck me as I lay in the hospital bed those lonely, early morning hours recently. Surely, the greatest comfort my family has is knowing the answer to the question of eternity about me; I am confident I will spend eternity in heaven.

As we look back over 2011, let's take time to look forward too. The future will be here before you know it.

Truly, the best is yet to come!

Happy New Year!

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