What beauty could be found in the ugliness of death?
“For while we are still in this tent [the physical body], we groan, being burdened – not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.” -2 Corinthians 5:4
Far from much of the conventional wisdom of his day, Paul does not see death as an ejection of the soul into a naked nothingness. No, he understands that reality for the believer is just the reverse.
It is now that we are naked, unfinished and incomplete, subject to all manner of forces around us that can strike us like an icy wind assaults bare flesh.
For the believer, death is not losing life, it is gaining even more. It is not a removal of glory that leaves us as naked souls, but an addition of heavenly majesty that dresses us up better than we ever were before.
Oh, that we would understand and embrace this! How much sweeter would our mortality seem if we truly believed that death is not our enemy any more, but that because of Christ, it has become a dear friend.
Oh, how tightly we cling to this pale imitation of life we call existence, when it is only a shadow of an existence whose lowest forms put to shame the greatest glories of this one.
May we not so long for this life that we forget what awaits us as believers and followers of Christ. May we rather face death in any form as a holy thing, a sacred portal into life everlasting with Him.
May we not too quickly seek the clothes of death, but when they come, may we as believers receive them as what Christ has made them by His death and resurrection: beautiful.