I walked my Damascus road when I was twenty-one, going to a funeral. I never met the father of my friend but his funeral was a turning point on how I have come to see things. I was feeling sorry for that dear friend but those who were closely related to the deceased seemed to be happier than I was and this shocked me. I may never have experienced death in my family yet but I am well aware that losing a loved one is a difficult predicament which some people are not able to overcome.
However, the funeral made me think my feelings then were surreal and that it was out of place, that I should be feeling happy for my friend for losing her dear father. I walked in confusion, not able to connect feeling happy to losing a loved one. It was just not logical at all but the look on the family members’ faces made me envious of my Christian friend. There was enormous peace and contentment in them that I started to want, like a hungry child wanting to eat all he can.
After fourteen long years of going to church, I realized I could make better use of my time than going to the boring church sessions. I thought I was enjoying life to the fullest after making that decision and my life seemed pretty thrilling. My family prayed for my enlightenment a lot and I believe that that confusion after the funeral was a much-needed experience for me to understand being enlightened. I now realize that for me to understand what is white, I must know black; to understand joy, I must experience sorrow; to be found, I have to recognize that I am lost; to be saved, I have to see that I am in great danger.
When I die, I would like my family and friends to rejoice because I am going to a better place and not because they feel that there has been a great burden taken away from them. I now understand the essence of life, of suffering and pain, having that peaceful assurance that someday, I will be welcomed to an eternal glory by my very Savior, Jesus Christ.
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