Grave-Inspired Thinking, Gravely

My head rose above ground level…and I saw this:

sexton plotting grave
church sexton plotting the next grave

The morning was hazy, foggy-like — very fitting, in a dreary, morbid sort of way. And yet…kinda pretty. Would it set my mood for the day?

(And speaking of mood, what goes through a church sexton’s heart and mind while he plots out a new grave?)

Well, a day or two later I again came rising above ground level and there it was, way out there, amidst the gravestones:

the grave is dug
mound of dirt = grave dug

And in the foreground, surrounded by naturally-bejeweled grass, a reminder of a day over thirty-five years ago, when Hopewell hosted two different funerals in the same day.

On that day we buried my paternal grandfather Jacob Roth (the double gravestone at the left) and Amy Yoder (middle gravestone). Their well-used bodies were put away there under the giant tree. And the double-gravestone on the right? It marks the graves of James Bucher and his wife Fannie Bucher.

People have been dying a long time!

Well, back to the present.

After much time, the sexton was mostly done with his laborious preparations.

Then the pre-established Event happened. (Mine is likely pre-ordained. As is yours.)

So…that afternoon, somebody else delivered something to the gravesite:

the grave is ready
ready

That made it even more definite — the time had come to use that grave.

I turned my back and walked away.

Eventually…distance…and surroundings…gave a different perspective…and added beauty:

the grave waits
framed by beauty

But the beauty did nothing to change the reality of death.

And I looked at that scene and wondered that 90 years of living should have such an end.

All that living. And then it’s done.

And what’s left?

For all that living, what’s there to show for it?!

Well, two days after the burial, as I stood and gazed down at the grave and pondered, I pulled out my cellphone:

basket of fruit of gravestone
the fruit of a life?

And I proceeded to Tweet it with this message:

The End. NO!!!

That grave, that body, that freshly-disturbed dirt, that yet-incomplete gravestone, that basket of fresh fruit — none of them is what his life came to!

We do not know all the fruit and usefulness of Richard’s life. But his Creator and Redeemer knows. And rewards.

So that grave is not the end.

Richard moved on. To a new body. To a new life. To…

Praise God!!!

Now, do you have a Bible verse to share? Please use the comment section below. Thanks!

4 thoughts on “Grave-Inspired Thinking, Gravely

  1. Interesting Mark, I enjoy your perspectives on things. A verse that came to mind about dying and resting is Rev. 14 :13
    “And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.” I like the resting idea. God bless

  2. Philippians 1:21 For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.

    Hosea 13:14a I will ransom them from the power of the grave, I will redeem them from death.

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