Over the last few weeks I have heard people in my hospice care and individuals on t.v. express their desire to live forever. My common response is that since I seem to make the same mistakes over and over, living forever sounds like a nightmare more than a dream!
And let’s not forget the environmental impact of immortality (should everyone live forever), the continued witnessing of wars and natural disasters, or the constant experience of loss (should only a few select individuals be granted immortality).
I imagine for some the longing to live forever grows out of their fear of death. If you do not have a belief in any after-life or reincarnation as Rebecca did, the finality of death is daunting.
For others, perhaps the drive to do things—travel the world with a loved one, have fourth, fifth, sixth careers, or have the time to be “successful”—is what brings on the idea that never dying could make these things possible.
There is something about living forever, however, that makes me wonder how productive one would actually be.
As it is, with our limited life spans, how many take advantage of every opportunity that comes their way? I will need to pay more attention, but I do not recall hearing this desire for immortality come out of the mouths of too many young persons.
Do we suddenly wish life would never end when we reach middle age and face the stark realization that “it’s all down hill from here?” Do we panic when struck with the horrific fact that time is running out and we have so much that we still want to do? Youth (and life) is wasted on the young, right? When we are in our teens and twenties it is hard to imagine that life is limited. We delay taking those adventures. We down play the importance of healthy relationships. We figure next year is the time to seek out that career or passion we long to do.
What so many of us fail to do is to live in the moment. To live each day seeking joy, peace and reconciliation. To discover what gifts God has blessed us with to better this world. To set our sights on tomorrow making those dreams a reality. And to go to bed without regrets.
I believe that when we are able to live in the moment, life itself is fulfilling and beautiful.
Death is no longer daunting.
It is simply a natural part of the fullness of life, the circle coming complete.