In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.What a testimony for Christ!
A few months ago Daniel's younger brother wrote a song. Nothing unusual about that because Matthew is always writing songs. But this song was different. This song is about heaven. And this song will be played at the funeral today. It's a beautiful song and I hope you'll take time to listen to it. (Since I just linked it three times, there's no excuse not to!)
I wonder if Daniel had listened to Matthew's song when he wrote: "My goal for the next week, or two, or maybe lifetime, or even forever, is to uncover and realize more and more how much He loves me." (italics mine)
The sanctuary in our home church holds about 300. I'm pretty sure they'll be setting up overflow chairs throughout the rest of the building. The family has asked people to pray especially that those who do not know God would listen carefully to His saving message of grace today. Do I hear an amen?!
We've been able to keep up with what has happened via facebook, e-mails, and phone calls over the internet. The Daysman writes that the new social media has changed the way we grieve with its influence on the younger generation. He referenced an article in the New York Times about how "Facebook already hosts thousands of memorialized accounts of deceased users so their friends and family can continue to post photos and comments."
We've read a number of comments and tributes to Daniel on facebook this week, including a beautiful post by his dad. We've enjoyed looking through the photo album his friends spontaneously put together, sending any photos they had to Michael who put them all together. My little corner of the blogosphere usually generates a fraction of the hits it received over the past few days after I linked to facebook and scores of other people re-posted the link. I had more visitors stop by to read the post about Daniel than I had the whole previous month.
It makes me wonder: Have you been affected differently by the loss of a loved one since the onset of online social media?