Funeral Parlors and Fun Parties
Tears. Sorrow. Raw Emotion. Real Life. Death. Death is the cause of so much heartache, hurts and pain.
Solomon, the wisest man to ever live wrote Ecclesiastes 7:2 as God directed him, and the emphasis is interesting; There is a priority of attending funeral services and visiting with people who just lost a loved one to the throes of death. This singular scripture goes as far to say that it is better to go to a funeral parlor than to a fun party.
It is better to go to the house of mourning, than to go to the house of feasting: for that is the end of all men; and the living will lay it to his heart.
It is better to go to a funeral home. Not fun – but needed for a proper perspective on life. With life being devalued today, kids killing each other, and the news filled with reporting of one violent event or another – it makes me wonder – Has today’s modern child (an adults) been to enough funerals?
Probably not. Many people avoid taking their children to the funeral home. With good intentions of “not scarring the kids” or preventing them from seeing or hearing something disturbing, many well meaning parents, grandparents, and guardians find other places for their kids to be during funerals. In fact – lots of adults avoid funerals as well.
Think of it this way; If a teenager has only known about death from a movie or video game – death cannot seem like real life. He has no basis or foundation for understanding the depths of pain, the wrenching of the loss, or the changes in life that death causes for those who remain. The seriousness of death is not something on his mind.
Since God says that it is better to go to a funeral than to go to a party – it should cause us to consider our priorities, teaching moments, and how to best place an emphasis on the value of life. Because death is in the future of every man God says being present with the corpse and with those grieving – will cause a person to “lay it to heart.”
We do not “lay it (death) to heart” enough because we avoid thinking about death. Many don’t even talk about it. But if a person thinks about death in a proper, Biblical way – it will cause him to make better choices in life! When a person thinks about death – He will live better!
For example, here is a Fox News Headline from April 7, 2018: “Lakeith Smith, 18, of Montgomery, Ala., was sentenced to 65 years by Judge Sibley Reynolds for “felony murder, armed burglary, second-degree theft and third-degree theft,” FOX8 LIVE reported.”
“Smith smiled and laughed while being sentenced at the Elmore County courthouse. He had turned down a plea deal that would have recommended he spend 25 years in prison on the charges.”
‘I don’t think Mr. Smith will be smiling long when he gets to prison,’ C.J. Robinson, chief assistant district attorney, said. ‘We are very pleased with this sentence. Because the sentences are consecutive, it will be a long time before he comes up for even the possibility for parole, at least 20 to 25 years.’”
“Judge Reynolds said Smith seemed to show no remorse for his crimes during the trial and did not apologize. He also overhead the teen say, ‘I don’t have time for this.’”
Laughing. I don’t have time for this? What? Here is an 18-year-old who apparently has never considered the gravity of life and death. He is an example of the modern teen who believes life is ego centric and the purpose of living is to have a constant party – just have a good time. Can I suggest that it would be better to take your kids to at least one funeral annually than to throw an ego centric, all out birthday party for them every year? That is not intended to be a morbid thought. Funerals in their proper context will help you and your child live better and make better choices.
No one likes tears. Sharing in grief is not a fun thing or easy thing to do – but it will make you a better person. When teaching your family about death, consider the age of your kids. Find an age appropriate time to talk about and attend a funeral service. Consider things like is it closed casket, a cremation, a memorial, or a graveside service? Was this person a Christian? What was our connection to this person?
Besides emotional “closure” and other similar benefits, going to the funerals and being present when a person’s life is summarized in a 30-minute speech will cause several good things in your life.
- Funerals cause us to ponder the brevity of life. James 4:14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
- Funerals cause us to consider the priorities of life. Ecclesiastes 7:1 A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one’s birth.
- Funerals cause us to examine and “correct course” in future days. Psalm 27:4 One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.
The Apostle Paul, not doubt attended many funerals in his lifetime for Christian’s who were persecuted and killed for their faith. As he “laid to heart” the matter of life and death he said in the last letter he wrote in 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith…” The only way to run the course of life and finish well is the make right choices today. The only way to make right choices is to have Biblical values instilled in our life. Knowing the brevity and value of life is a major part of this plan.
Help yourself and help your kids; Develop a priceless value on human life – by considering the gravity of death by attending a funeral.