The Beauty of Death

Barbara Brinkworth

After living in Florida for 23 years, the fall season did not mean much to us. There really is no fall as such in central Florida. The temperatures in September are still often in the 90’s. By October, things begin to cool down; but still, there are very few deciduous trees. Buying a home this year in the North Carolina mountains has definitely changed our view of fall. After arriving here in April, we began to enjoy a year of firsts, where the seasons were concerned.

Spring was wonderful! There were so many beautiful flowers everywhere, even along the highway. Summer brought warmer, but very bearable, temperatures. The garden we had planted produced a bountiful and colorful harvest.

It was not long before fall began to show up. There are so many kinds of trees in western North Carolina. They began to change colors at different times; so there was a continual show of colors for many weeks. Red, yellow and bright orange leaves abounded.

As time went on, I soon realized that as beautiful as the leaves were, there was more to the story. When the weather got colder and the winds began to blow, the leaves started to drop off the trees. Soon the trees were almost bare. The reason for this was that the tree was “dying”; actually going in to winter mode. The beauty of the leaves, it turned out, was short lived.

As I thought about this phenomena, I pondered the beauty of another death — that of Jesus Christ. For leaves, the beauty came first, followed by death. Concerning the death of God’s Son, His death came first. The beauty followed afterward in the results of His death-the purchase of our salvation. At His death, all seemed lost. The disciples’ hopes were in ashes; but then came Sunday and the resurrection, as proof that God had accepted Jesus’ payment for our sins. Only God can give beauty for ashes.

Each of us will one day face death. We, too, can have beauty both before and after death; if we have accepted Jesus Christ alone as our personal Saviour (Rom. 10:9-10).

We are saved to do God’s will (Eph. 2:8-9). The beauty that shines from our lives after we are saved is all that we do for the Lord (Matt. 5:16). As we get nearer to death, just as the leaves, our lives can still be beautiful; as we faithfully serve the Lord in and through our local church (Heb. 10:25).

When our eyes will close in death, the beauty continues as we open them in Heaven (2 Corinthians 5:8). There we will spend eternity with the Lord in a place prepared just for us - “… and so shall we ever be with the Lord ( I Thess. 4:17).

My mom used to say, “Beauty is as beauty does.” Are you enjoying the beauty of salvation? Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour? If you are saved, is your beauty showing through as you work in the service of your Lord?

 “Death to the Christian is the funeral of all his sorrows and evils, and the resurrection of all his joys.” - Aughe

This article was featured in The Bible View #176.

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