Maybe because honest conversations about death rarely happen until we are forced to face it. Why not talk about it to help prepare each other for something we are all going to face? Or maybe because my mom Shirley’s health (she is with my kids in the pic) is failing so death is front and center with every conversation or visit I have with her. Bottom line is that the one thing most all of us can agree on is that our earthly bodies are breaking down and one day they will stop working. Recently I was introduce to author Henri Nouwen and after I finished the first book that a friend recommended “The Way of the Heart” (Great read BTW) I picked up his book “Our Greatest Gift, A Meditation on Dying and Caring” . I’m going to list a few quotes from the book to get you thinking but my hope is that you give it a read (it is a quick read) and then let me know how/if it impacted you. Sound good?
Here we go:
page 44: I want to believe that beyond the fatal battle for survival is a hopeful battle for life
Page 59: Through our caring presence, we keep announcing that sacred truth. Dying is not a sweet, sentimental event, it is a great struggle to surrender our lives completely.
Page 63: Together we can create that place where our dying friends can feel safe and can gradually let go and make the passage knowing that they are loved.
Page 94: To help each other die well is to help each other claim the fruitfulness in our weakness.