A Price Above Rubies
One of the greatest blessing of this Gospel are the promises we have of the hereafter. Maybe I am so keenly aware of it because I have not always had it, but the depth of the restored Gospel and what it promises us is astounding. It is truly the Price Above Rubies, or more accurately, that Pearl of Great Price. This weekend, I lost my last remaining grandparent. My grandpa died quietly in his sleep, and we got a phone call from one of his VFW buddies telling us the news. It was not unexpected, as he had declined minor surgery for a small heart problem, knowing full well what it meant. His facilities were entirely about him, but, like many proud men of his generation, that Greatest Generation, he refused to depend on anyone or anything for his the rest of his life. He went out like he lived his life- on his own terms and in his own time. When my grandma died just over six years ago, I watched how the grieving process effecting my loved ones, as well as myself. Even though at the time I was not yet a member of the Church, I knew that my grandma was not gone, that her spirit was simply moving on, as it was supposed to, and this gave me great comfort. Members of my family, and specifically my mother, had no such faith, thus death becomes a thief, a robber who steals away your loved one, and there is nothing to fill the void. When you think that life ends when a body dies, death then becomes a terrifying unknown, a thing to be frightened of and by. And, even more scary, is the idea of your soul going nowhere, ending, snuffed like a candle flame. It feels utterly hopeless. And so the healing cannot begin, and a person floats, directionless on a vast sea of tears and questions that have no answers. Contrast that with the brilliant and glorious light of the Restored Gospel. Maybe it feels so bright to me because of the contrast I have with not knowing, but I cannot imagine anything greater than knowing I will see my grandparents again. I will someday again touch my grandma's cheek, and will be able to hold her hand, and that maybe, after all of their earthly trials and even their divorce half a century ago, my grandparents have the hope of being together again. I know there is work to do, but just the thought of my grandma greeting the long lost Love of her life as he entered the kingdom yesterday, is a miraculous gift. (I suspect she had a few choice words for him, if I know her!) To me, this is the miracle of Christ's atonement, the holy grail, if you will.