By Elder Gerald DeForest Tyler
During the first week of May through the first week of July on an annual basis, we tend to remember and celebrate various personal events in our lives usually more so than at other periods of time during the year. In the beginning of this particular period of time during the month of May, we typically honor and celebrate our dear mothers, or at least their memory and legacy if they’re already deceased (Mother’s Day and Memorial Day). Then during the mid-month of this period, we do the same thing all over again in June as we remember, honor, and celebrate our beloved fathers (Father’s Day).
In the final month of this “Period of Remembrance and Celebration,” the beautiful month of July, we remember and celebrate both our national and individual holiday of freedom (Independence Day). Also during this specific three-month period of time, we usually engage in marriages and celebrate an abundant number of wedding anniversaries, high school, college, and university graduations, as well as prom and family reunion type of events.
Happily, we celebrate births and birthdays throughout the entire year, but sadly and regrettably, there are also death events which occur way too often that causes our hearts to ache and become quite heavy and painful when we suffer the loss of loved ones, relatives, and friends. Case in point on a personal note, I lost my former wife on July 1, 2014. And incidentally, she was the only one I ever had. I loved her until the very end. While it’s oh so true that – “you don’t miss your water until your well runs dry” – life should and does in fact go on! Death is quite cold and permanent for surviving family members, relatives, and friends, but once again, life does go on as God would have it.
Now with that said, allow me to encourage you to focus on positive and good things that tend to lift and brighten your spirit. We should spend quality time with other family members, relatives, and good friends while we’re blessed to still have them with us. Say and do kind and loving things. Give flowers while people can smell their fragrance and appreciate their God-created beauty. Be grateful while you have your parents and other family members because we must all eventually go the way of death. Do things that bring you joy, peace, and happiness – and always love, cherish, honor, and obey God!
Finally, and most especially for “truly born-again believers,” limit your sorrow and weeping as much as is humanly possible, knowing that joy does come in the morning. There is a “bright-side” somewhere. Celebrate life itself – and REJOICE in the Lord. And again I say – REJOICE! “Grace and mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied!”
Gerald D. Tyler, an ordained elder with senior pastoral experience, has been a God-called practicing minister since 1977 teaching and preaching the salvation gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.