Q: I went to a memorial service for a neighbor the other day, and the people who spoke didn't even mention God, heaven, or anything like that. Everything was about the person who'd died and how we should try to be like she was. Is this the trend in funerals and memorial services today? -- Mrs. S.Q.
A: I don't know if it's the trend or not, although as our society becomes more secular, we shouldn't be surprised if more memorial services become like this. After all, if someone didn't believe in God or in heaven, it would be hypocritical to pretend that they did.
Your letter saddens me, however, because in spite of their expressions of respect and admiration, in reality those who spoke at this service believed that this life is all there is, and that there's no hope for any life beyond the grave. According to them, all we have to live for is the present moment, and nothing we do has any eternal significance. They are like those of whom the Bible speaks, believing that "Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope" (1 Chronicles 29:15).
How different our lives are when we put our faith and trust in Christ! Then, we know we aren't here by accident, but God created us for a purpose, and some day we will go to be with Him in heaven forever. We know this is true because Jesus Christ has removed the barrier of sin that separates us from God by His death and resurrection.
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Have you turned to Christ and put your faith and trust in Him for your salvation? Make your decision for Christ, and then ask God to help you point others to the hope and joy we have because of Him.
Send your queries to "My Answer," c/o Billy Graham, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201; call 1-(877) 2-GRAHAM, or visit the Web site for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association: www.billygraham.org.)