We Walk on Because He Did
Many times, after a great speech is given, the person who must speak afterwards says, as his or her humble opening words, “How am I to follow that?”
And that is indeed a question we all must ask ourselves after a saint has gone on. How do any of us follow that? How do any of us follow such a great example when we must go on memory alone? How do we even walk, much less make them proud, when we can’t even breathe due to the weight of our grief?
In May of 2015, I lost a woman very near and dear to my heart. Over the next weeks and months, I continually asked myself the same question: How do I walk on?
It took a very long time for me to realize -- and I am still learning, day by day – that the disciples must have asked this same question. When their dearest Friend was crucified and lay in the grave, surely they asked, “How do we walk on? How do we carry out the work He gave when He is not here? He Himself was the work, and just as He said, ‘It is finished.’”
We walk on in the face of loss and pain because we know the eternal truth: death isn’t really dying.
The disciples had their questions answered in the same way that ours shall be answered “some glad morning when this life is o’er.” They were answered by the resurrection.
Their answer came on nail-pierced feet early one Easter morning. It was simply this: we walk on because He did. We walk on in the face of loss and pain because we know the eternal truth: death isn’t really dying.
And when that saint passed from this life and into the glorious next, I was assured that she, too, knew that she would outlive this world and its chains. By the very way she lived, that woman I loved taught me that what she did and for Whom she lived were not only greater than this life – they could not be contained by this life.
Because of her, it is my daily prayer that:
“When from my dying bed /
My ransomed soul shall rise /
‘Jesus died, my soul to save,’ /
Shall rend the vaulted skies.”
Our lives are far more than the breaths we take because our lives do not end when our breathing does. It is then, in that dark hour, that we begin to live.
Discussion Question: Who has been an important saint in your life?