Do not let your hearts be troubled.

These are some of the last words spoken by Jesus to his disciples before he is crucified. The one who is about to die, comforting those left behind.

And this is not unique to Jesus. I have been privileged to be at the side of more than a few death beds. So often, the one who is about to take their last breath, uses it to comfort those who will continue that routine intake of breath.

Don’t worry. It will be ok. I will be fine; you will be fine. Do not let your heart be troubled.

All of these words of comfort speak the same thing: I love you.

“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you out myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.”

John 14: 3

I remember when each of my children were born. I was so lucky in that they were mostly uncomplicated births. Immediately after being born, they were placed upon my chest, and I, to borrow from Jesus, took them to myself. I held, and loved, and cried, and felt my already expanded heart explode into a million pieces.

I can easily imagine God in this way, taking us to Godself. Holding, loving, tears of joy and wonder being shed, as each of us are born and as each of us return back to God.

“Held in Love” by Elaine Almond

This is my comfort, as I pray for those who, in these days, are dying without family to surround them. That they are not alone, but that they are held firmly upon the chest of Jesus, who waits to take them to himself. And that Jesus, whispers over and over to them, “Do not let your heart be troubled.”

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