It is Easter time and a gathering opportunity for your whole family. Your family made a commitment to all get together this year at Easter to make sure you celebrated something this year as a family. Grandma chose Easter and chose to rent a few beach houses for everyone to share. You are far and wide spread apart all over the country, but each and every brother and sister and wife and husband and kid and grandkid is present. Every aunt and uncle is present with every cousin in tow. You all arrive on Thursday at the beach and Friday and Saturday are filled with egg hunts and family dinners and dangerous yard darts and water gun fights. Everyone has a beach blast bingo that will not soon be forgotten. Even crazy Aunt Sue manages not to interrupt any family times with harrowing tales of her 1970s exploits with LSD. Ah… family.
It is Saturday night. Everyone is getting their clothes ready for church and borrowing socks and comparing outfits. All except Uncle Bill. Everyone knows he won’t go. He never goes. You talk with Aunt Sue and she says the whole family has given up asking him about churchy things. When was the last time you asked him? 10 years ago. You ask your mother. 15 years ago. You ask grandma. 25 years ago. It seems no one had spoken to Uncle Bill about spiritual things in over a decade. He’s a good guy, just not a church going guy… you know. Another cousin said, oh yeah, he’s a Christian he just never reads his Bible or goes to church or prays. Huh? It was all strange.
What do you do?
What do you say?
You know that you and he always have gotten along well. You know YOU have never had a conversation with him about God or church or spiritual things. You think about it and you decide to put it off. Maybe after church. Maybe a heartfelt letter when you get back home. Maybe send a book from the Christian bookstore. Maybe.
Everyone leaves the next day for church. The day started early with a Sunrise service, then a pancake breakfast, and then another church service. Everyone headed back to the beach houses for an awesome Easter lunch prepared by the expert cooks of the family. Fried turkey. Mashed potatoes. Redneck sushi. You all arrived to the beach houses to find Uncle Bill dead on the back porch. He had a heart attack while sitting on the back porch looking out at the ocean.
Now the maybe conversation is a never conversation. It is everlasting too late. Why had you not taken the opportunity when you had the chance? Perhaps because you felt that there was no real sense of urgency. There was no urgency about the news of the Gospel or urgency about the reality of death without Jesus and you did not share your faith.
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