My dad died a few weeks ago, unexpectedly. He had been sort of sick, but was being treated. He was in the hospital a few days before he died, but the day before he was much better. The doctors had said he was stronger and breathing better, and they thought he was on the road to recovery. Then that night he took a turn for the worse and died the next day. We didn’t know it would be that day, that hour. But even as we hoped for the best, we prepared for the worst, I guess. My mom and sister and I were with him all the time at the hospital. His sister brought his mom in to visit – my grandma is 90 years old and could not drive herself from Missouri. Even though we hadn’t expected him to die, we ended up being glad Grandma got to come see him.
In an episode of the Simpsons, Bart says he plans to live a debauched life and then go for a deathbed conversion. I guess that works if you know when you’re going to die, but since you don’t always know the day or the hour, that plan can backfire. Luckily, my dad did not really have to worry about that either. He had spent his whole life devoted to family, giving to charity, helping anyone who needed help. My folks were always ‘bringing home strays.’ My mom was always feeding neighbor kids. My dad always stopped to help when someone was stranded at the side of the road.
We wished he’d been more prepared in another way: he had several different bank and brokerage accounts and left no records. He worked his whole life to prepare so my mom would be taken care of financially, and now we can’t find the money! I’m sure it will all work out eventually, but now it’s been frustrating trying to figure out what he had and where he had it. We also could not get into his computer because he had it password protected and we didn’t know the password. He wasn’t prepared for the eventuality that someone else would have to deal with his computer and his accounts.
Jesus says to be ready at any time. When the boss is away, the employees will goof off. But if the boss comes back early, the employees who are doing their work will be rewarded, and those who are partying will be let go. We need to be ready at any time. We don’t know when our time is up and we can’t always count on having time to make things right.
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