Lost shovels, rings, plastic buckets, treasures, playthings, the beach is full of lost treasure. Some years ago my children and I were in Florida for a funeral. My children and I had already experienced the sudden death of my mother, paternal grandmother, maternal grandmother, and father in quick succession. Not wanting them to be overcome by so much grief, I made sure to mix in time for them to blow off steam. We spent time at the beach searching for live starfish, sand dollars, and conch. They were even treated to a close encounter with a dolphin pod. Watching the animals leap out of the water and flip in the air is something they will never forget.
On days we didn’t go to the beach, we spent time with family reminiscing. The kids swam in the pool or searched for lizards. Being from the north, we don’t get lizards running amuck all over our yards, so the reptiles were a constant source of excitement. I think some people may have taken exception to my decision to work in time for my children to take a break from the grief, but After having plumbed the depths of despair after my mother’s death, I didn’t want to marinate them in those feelings again.
For me, the most critical aspect of death was remembering that God had not forsaken or abandoned me. I may have felt alone, lost, bereft, but God was with me. He hadn’t left me no matter how lonely I felt. So unlike the forgotten toys or lost jewelry on the beach, I was not going to suffer beneath the sand for all eternity. Sooner or later, I’d realize I had been pulled up some time ago and was currently not in the sand but enjoying the cool breeze of His love and growing strong under the shade of His hand.
2 Corinthians 4: 5-10 “For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ a made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. “