One of our members, Gloria Gray, fell asleep in Jesus last evening. She was one of those quiet, unassuming people that a church can't do without. She blessed our church with her service at our Saturday evening worship. That group will especially miss Gloria.
While doing my devotional reading this morning, in the Treasury of Daily Prayer, I can across this entry from Martin Luther. Although I had read it before, it brought so much comfort, peace and hope.
From the Gospel of today and from the son of the widow (of Nain) we should learn to perceive the great power which God, through Christ, will apply to us at the last day, when, by a word, He will recall to life all men and give everlasting salvation to believers. This will be done in the twinkling of an eye, in order that we may not doubt in the least either the power of our Lord Jesus to do this or His will gladly to do it. for here we have the example. The son of the widow is dead; he has lost the gift of hearing and all other senses. But when Christ speaks to him, he hears. This is certainly a strange and wonderful incident. He that does not hear, hears; and he that does not live, lives. Nothing is done but that Christ opens His mouth and bids him arise. The single word is so powerful that death has to vanish and life return...
Before the Lord death is not death at all. For us it is called and is death when we die. But before God it is a light sleep which could not be any lighter.
These very facts our Lord Jesus wishes to impress upon our minds, so that we may not fear when pestilence and death itself draw near, but that we may learn to say: O death, what can you do even in your worst form? You have terrible teeth, which you show to frighten me, for I do not like to die. But I will not merely behold your work when you, like an executioner, draw the sword; but I will remember what our Lord can and will do when you have slain me; namely, that He is not afraid of you and does not care for you raging and destroying, but says, "O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction." If you can kill my Christians, I can destroy and recall them to life again.