“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you (1 Pet. 1:3-4).”
It was tough to see my Grandpa die. He was diagnosed with bone cancer in the winter of 2008. I just graduated from college that summer and was staying home for a year before attending seminary. I remember watching my grandpa go through pain and agony. One day I moved him from the living room to his bed. It was a struggle for him to move his body and get off the wheelchair. He stayed on that same bed for a couple more weeks.
By this time, hospice visited the home. My grandpa could no longer speak to us, but began his descent towards death. I remember quoting Scripture out loud with my Mom, Dad, Grandma, and two older brothers. Toward the last couple of days, Grandpa struggled for breath. It was hard to hear and see him go through this, and I felt like the grip of death was even upon me. He passed away on Valentines Day, February 14th, 2009.
Grandpa loved to watch sports, go hunting, eat pie, and most importantly, hang out with his grandkids. Whenever I left the house, he would always say, “Be good now.” These memories of him are perched in my conscience and will forever remain with me.
I have hope that I will see my Grandpa again. I know he liked watching Billy Graham preach on television and hearing the good news of Jesus Christ. This fact alone gives me confidence and hope.
This is what the Lord is telling us in 1 Peter. You and I have hope. Jesus has washed away our sins and has given us an inheritance that can’t be destroyed, not even by our greatest foe, death! Jesus has conquered death and if you put your faith in him, you will be with him in heaven forever. This hope is real and I pray that it will become more real as I get closer to my death from this life.