The influence and power of good never die

THAT'S PROBABLY a strong statement to lead off with, but over the years it is the key lesson I've learned when I've had to deal with the passing of people who have been close to me.

I've been thinking about this more than usual, because the practice of observing the anniversary of people's deaths is increasing. Along with this trend is a tendency to relive the events that led to someone's passing, rather than focusing on the substance of their life.

Whether we are talking about a public tragedy or the passing of a family member or friend, there is little question that death challenges us. Grief and the feeling of loss often strike hard. In most cases, family or a community of friends pulls together to give support. But sometimes, long after this gathering of support slows down or ends, the spiritual need, the need for comfort and wholeness, remains. Often we wrestle not just with the passing, but with the ideas about death that have been shared with us. Several times this year when I've spoken with friends about the unending nature of God's love, they've replied, "Don't talk to me about that."

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TECHNOLOGY—servant not master
November 4, 2002

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