‘Three Funerals & A Wedding’

You might have seen the movie Three Weddings and a Funeral (1994), starring Hugh Grant. Recently I have gone to the opposite: one wedding and three funerals — the wedding of Rod & Leanne Cole-Clarke’s son, Scott, and the funerals of three TGS people: Helen Blair Rains, Dulcie Hatton and Mavis Hogan. As you’d expect, the wedding was a joyous time, but the funerals all involved sadness. Yet King Solomon says this—

“It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man [person]; the living should take this to heart.”  (Ecclesiastes 7:2)

This might seem like crazy or morbid instruction! However, Solomon isn’t saying that you and I should never feast (he’s using hyperbole here), but he is reminding each of us that we are mortal and so should live in the light of that. So many people we know don’t want to think about death and what is beyond it, for if you don’t have assurance of forgiveness and of a guaranteed place in heaven, then death is a depressing and/or terrifying prospect (check out Hebrews 2:15 & 9:27 for this sobering message).

YET for all of us that God has lovingly saved from destruction and given real hope to, death reminds us that living now for only eighty years of life is foolish and self-defeating. However, living now with eternity’s reality and values is both wise and rewarding. It not only leads to paradise for ever (& what is 80 years here compared to that?), but can help us also be less anxious about the things of this life when we ‘hold loosely’ to them. More than these, however, it leads us to glorify Jesus more when we are seeking first God’s kingdom and righteousness (Matthew 6:32).

So … Hugh Grant, as much as I like weddings, I am not jealous of you!

Cameron Wills

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