Monday, February 6, 2017

a house of mourning

Dear Nahum,

Today these words from the ancient Jewish King Solomon crossed my mind as I was putting away the groceries I brought home:

It is better to go to a house of mourning
than to go to a house of feasting, 
for death is the destiny of everyone;
the living should take this to heart.

We still believe God could intervene miraculously and heal you, but we also believe we need to be prepared to make some decisions if He does not. That means that as we enter this second half of our pregnancy with you, we're having more conversations about funerals and burials.

As anyone could guess, we'd much rather be planning a happy baby shower than a tearful baby memorial service. From an earthly perspective, feasting is much more enjoyable; but from an eternal perspective, Solomon says that mourning does us more good. A house of mourning gives everyone a chance to reflect on his or her own death someday, provoking a kind of sober attitude that it is hard to find time for in a world that delights much more in feasting and entertainment than in discussing serious matters.

No matter what happens to you — whether we feast or mourn at your arrival — your little life has already made many people "go to a house of mourning" in their minds; you've helped them to think about things they need to think about. You've helped us to think about things we need to think about, too.

You're doing us a big favour, Little One. Thank you.

Mom and Dad