GLMX #206: A Place of Impossibilities

A Place of Impossibilities

This past week, the bodies of the people who were killed in the tragic shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, were returned to the Netherlands. In a solemn ceremony, the country mourned their great loss together as each of the plain wooden coffins were removed from the plane. Thousands of people lined the 160-mile route from the airfield to a forensic facility where the bodies will be identified and then returned to their families for proper burial.

We can only imagine how awful it must have been for the family members of those who were killed in the incident to watch as coffin after coffin was carried from a plane to a waiting hearse. Imagine how it would feel to be grieving over a loved one who has died and you don’t even know if you will be able to recognize that person’s body when you receive it or if you will receive it at all. Imagine waiting at the airport to greet a friend when they arrive and they never come.

These experiences of grief, suffering, and pain are common to the human race. It is almost as though it is par for the course of life on Earth.

However, what if I told you that there was a place where such experiences are not simply unlikely, but completely impossible. Imagine if there were a place where it is impossible to die, to grieve, or to cry. A place where it is impossible to lose someone you loved. A place where there are no plane crashes, or sudden deaths, or accidents.

This place is not just a fantasy. It is a real place — it is called Heaven. The Bible describes Heaven in the book of Revelation. Heaven is a place where “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” Why are certain negative things that happen on earth not allowed in Heaven? The Bible tells us why when it says, “there shall in no wise enter into [Heaven] any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie.”

All of the ugly, vile, sinful things that happen on earth will be impossible in Heaven. The question is: Will you be there?

MUSICAL SELECTION: “Wonder of the World” by Rush of Fools

GLMX #204: Malaysia Airlines Flight 17: If You Were to Die Today, Where Would You Go — Heaven or Hell?

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17

It was like deja vu.

Another Malaysia Airlines flight mysteriously vanishing from the sky.

Scores of people dead in an instant.

Government leaders and aviation experts scrambling for answers.

Hundreds of families and friends grieving for their loved ones.

The world in shock once again.

Nothing could have prepared the world for what happened on Thursday, July 17, 2014. A passenger airplane, carrying 298 people, was shot out of the sky as it flew over a war zone in eastern Ukraine. Residents of a Ukrainian village reported debris and corpses falling out of the sky — one woman said a body fell through her roof, another body fell into a neighbor’s garden. Hundreds of bodies fell into the wheat fields around the village.

Just as it seemed the world was recovering from the shock of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 — where 239 people were lost forever after a plane inexplicably vanished somewhere — another tragedy eerily reminiscent of the first re-opened worries, fears, and feelings of helplessness. The shock of this unexpected occurrence, which left families around the world from Australia to the Netherlands to the United States mourning the loss of their loved ones, reminds us of the fact that we can be here today and gone tomorrow. Or, more accurately in this case, here one minute and gone the next.

In times like these, we should call to mind the Bible’s words in 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.”

As King David prayed in Psalm 39:4: “LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.”

This event reminds us that our lives are no more valuable than the lives of those lost on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. We are just as fragile. We, too, can be here one moment and gone the next. We can pass from life to eternity in an instant because of some unexpected, tragic event that is totally beyond our control. Such events remind us that we need to be ready for death and for what comes after death: a meeting with God, our Creator, and the beginning of life in an eternal destination.

MUSICAL SELECTION: “Blink” by Revive