They are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise.
Lying on an infirmary cot at the age of twenty-four, Thérèse of Lisieux assessed her situation. “I am not dying,” she wrote to a friend. “I am entering life.”
Far from becoming gloomy at the prospect of an untimely death, Thérèse rejoiced. She could say these words even though she was experiencing the absence of God through much of her illness. Despite the dark night she was in, she knew through faith that an eternity was awaiting her where she would be united with her Spouse, the Lord Jesus. It’s no wonder Thérèse’s last words were “My God, . . . I love you!”
In Scripture’s readings (Luke 20:36) remind us that death isn’t the end for us either. A resurrection to eternal life awaits all of God’s children when we die. First, our souls will rise to be with the Lord forever. Then, on the last day, God will breathe new life into our bodies—just as he did for the prophets in scripture’s reading (Luke 20:36). Jesus said that on that day, we will be like the angels, meaning that we’ll never be subject to death again (Luke 20:36).
How about taking a few moments in prayer to anticipate your share in this resurrection? Go ahead and use your imagination. Maybe, like Thérèse, you’ll rejoice in the anticipation of eternity with the Lord. At the least, you’ll probably find a new perspective on today’s challenges.
Think about how, in the age to come, you will still be you. Your personality won’t be lost. On the contrary, it will beam, bright and full, because you’ll be set free from a weak, sinful nature. All your experiences that have molded, challenged, and refined you will carry everlasting significance. All your gifts will be perfected; all your wounds will be transformed and glorified. The unique imprint of God’s image within you will shine forth for all to see.
Yes, you’ll receive a new body, one not constrained by weakness but transfigured and raised in power. What’s more, all the ways you’ve given yourself in love—encouraging, sacrificing, pouring yourself out for people—will become like gleaming gold. Even the smallest acts of service will ripple throughout eternity. And as you stand completed and fulfilled, you will look upon the beauty of the Lord forever.
Word Among Us