Today’s blog is about death.
The Passing of a Friend
On Monday morning, a dear friend of mine died. At 44 years young, he was too young to die. And yet, in his 44 years, he touched the lives and hearts of countless people, not the least of which are the hearts and lives of his wife and children, brothers and sisters, mother, father, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, etc. etc. etc. There are no words that can give expression to or adequately honor the untimely death of a great man. There are no words that can give reason or explanation to a tragedy such as this. The sad thing is that quite simply….life….and death….happen. It was surely NOT “his time.” Neither could it possibly be God’s will to take such an amazing man from this world…or worse…to deprive his family of his presence and his love. My God is not that cruel. There are no words that can comfort his family at this time of devastating loss. They will miss him and there will always be a hole in their hearts where he dwelt. And time does not heal all wounds. I cannot wrap my brain (or my heart) around this death, I can’t imagine the expanse around which the family will have to wrap their minds and their hearts. But the one thing I hold on to during times such as these is the idea of a God who loves and who always holds us in God’s loving embrace and that even in the most ridiculous of deaths…there is the promise of new life. We don’t know the new life yet….but as we allow ourselves to be present to our grief….as we allow ourselves to mourn, to wail, to keen, to get really angry at an unfair Universe and perhaps even at an unfair God…..as we allow ourselves to grieve, new life will be revealed.
Eulogy for Obi Wan
I had the fantastic fortune of meeting this great man through a business networking group and in becoming a client, I discovered in him a man of remarkable integrity, honesty, generosity, compassion and humor. He was passionate about many things and we discovered through our professional relationship, a shared passion for all things GEEK – Science Fiction, Fantasy, Renaissance Festivals and most importantly – STAR WARS. Because he bore a remarkable resemblance to Ewan McGregor as the young Obi Wan Kenobi, I affectionately called him “Obi-Wan” and he frequently received from me email, text and phone messages relating to his area of expertise which read “Help us Obi-Wan, you are our only hope!” As I pen this in honor of my friend, I am still in shock…surely the rumors of his death must be greatly exaggerated. But sadly, he has indeed passed beyond this world and I know that he is now fully reunited with “The Force” (another word for God)….as the Force was always strong in that one. While we may no longer experience the physical presence of our friend and while it may seem as if he has retreated to a Galaxy Far Far Away…his Spirit will always be with us and it is our job to look for him…to look for him in the smile of a stranger, to remember him in the generosity of a friend, to know him in the encouraging words of an acquaintance, to look for him in those strange coincidences and synchronicities that let us know that he is right here, walking beside us. So as we bid adieu to our dear friend, and embrace each other in our grief, let us also remember that Obi-Wan is as near to us as our very breath because in the Love of God, we are never separate…we are always one. He has not left us, he has simply taken another form….a form that in many ways, is more intimate than life itself.
Obi-wan, we will miss you….I will miss you….and my heart goes out to those you have left behind…especially your wife and children who are also too young to be losing their husband and father. And my prayer for them is that they know the comfort of family and friends, find consolation in their prayer and that they experience your loving presence in the silent places of their hearts where your love still dwells.
Obi-Wan, as the Force is with you….may it also be with them.