E. POVERTY OF SPIRIT: DEATH

It is indeed a sad thought to think that the 8,000,000 people now living in the great city of New York will be all gone in 100 or so years: from a baby born today to the oldest men now living.

We read in the book of psalms: "Man's days are like those of grass; like the flower of the field he blooms; The wind sweeps over him and he is gone and his place knows him no more." (Ps. 103:15-16)

And in the book of Sirach we read: "Like a drop of sea water, like a grain of sand, so are these few years among the days of eternity. ...He sees and understands that their death is grievous, and so he forgives them all the more. (Si 18:8, 10)

As I grow older, I'm more aware of my moral weakness and that my days are numbered. No doctor can save my life and so I'm learning to trust more in God's mercy and his promise of heaven. In the end, my life will be completely in God's hands realizing that my being is totally dependent of God.

Humility is truth about our dependence on God and nothing bring about this realization more readily than the shortness of life. Death is the great equalizer. It does not matter who you are, how important you are, if you are rich or poor, liked or disliked. Everyone must die. Death reduces our bodies to dust; it robs us of our attachments to things, places and persons: all that contributes to our false ideas of ourselves vanish and we stand naked before the living God.

Please click image to read the moving account of the death of St. Thérèse.

To contemplate death helps us to realize our dependence of God. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.