The day my dad died


I remember when my dad died. I stood beside his bed, my hands on his chest, as he quietly exhaled. One moment he was there, the next he was gone. And life moved on. A sand castle on the beach. For hours the castle stands tall, and then it’s gone.

When I read Peter’s description of the earth’s future fate, I recall that early morning when my dad—after 87 years—slipped away. Peter said, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare” (2 Peter 3:10). Since everything on this planet will face this final and fast approaching fate, doesn’t it make sense for us to draw our identity from something else? Something that will last?

I noted last week that Solomon observed that life “under the sun” is meaningless. It would be easy to think Solomon viewed life through a pessimistic lens. And that would be valid except for Solomon’s dramatic conclusion. It’s so brief and simple you might give it no more attention than a footnote. He said, “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments” (Ecc. 12:13).

Everyone wants the key that unlocks the mysteries of life. Solomon searched high and low. He couldn’t find it with knowledge, pleasure, work or money. And so God showed him a better way. He gives us, not the key, but the Locksmith.