I like walking through old cemeteries. To me they are a kind of library. As I walk among the markers I read biographies; a name, a date of birth and of death. Sometimes an inscription tells of a profession, or whether they were the a son or daughter, husband or wife. Some died in war. Some in youth, some in old age. Each has a story to tell. At times you sense the tragedy of a whole family, church and village. I saw this once in a small church cemetery. A mother and three of her children died of cholera within days of each other in the 1850s. I grieved for the husband and father left behind.
In the picture above it looks as if the dead look down upon the living in the city below. Maybe they do. “Good people dear as you pass by, On my cold grave do cast and eye As you are now so once was I, As I am now so shall you, Prepare for death and follow me.”
Jesus once told a story about a man who never had enough. No matter how much he had, he wanted more. One night the Angel of Death took his hand. “Tell me,” Jusus asked, who does his stuff belong to now?” (Luke 12:16-21)
“Th each is to number our days,” the Psalmist wrote, “that we might gain a heart of wisdom. “ (90:12) A glimpse of grace.
May that glimpse of grace be our prayer, too.