Daily Reflection
September 22nd, 2000
Jeanne Schuler
Philosophy Department
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First Corinthians 15:12-20
Psalms 17:1, 6-8, 15
Luke 8:1-3

What Lasts?

“When we’re in heaven, will we have friends?“ wondered my son.  “What would you do for eternity without some friends?“  His brother snorted, already convinced that such conjecture is pointless.  That talk goes nowhere.  We don’t know about heaven.  And if we try to find out, we’ll just quit believing.  You don’t have to deny what you don’t bother to think about.  Don’t go there.

Great minds offer a remedy.  You can hold on to eternity by splitting it off from time.  Keep them separate and you won’t lose either one.  So we partition things:  the infinite lies beyond the finite, the body is detached from mind, the supreme being fully transcends the human, death is opposed to life.  What we know breaks off from the unknowable.  Each is safe.  Reason patrols this side of the line.  Over there lies faith.

But what lies beyond the horizon won’t keep quiet.  We are called from across these lines to make sense out of who we are.   A friend’s death awakens us to the urgency of living.  The beauty of the morning fills us with the presence of God.  Families heal.  Old hurts are handed over.  Energy flows into community.  We see how good this world is.  This goodness carries us toward a fuller joy.  Not to nothing.  Yes, what exists is enough.  Yes, there is more.  Truth carries us between words and silence.  Desire changes but does not die.

Paul scolds us into remembering the resurrection.  The man whom we loved has died.  And he lives.  Not far from here.  Do not wrap this truth in fine linens and bury it away.  Talk to the truth.  Howl your doubts.  Look for the man on the road today.  Come together with friends to ask:  what does he want of us?  What really matters?  What lasts?

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