3. Trials are meant to make us more like Jesus. Hebrews 4:15 - "For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin." What is the best way to become more like somebody else, to become more intimately intertwined in you're relationship with them? Its to go through the same experiences as they did. Jesus experienced suffering and pain beyond what we could imagine. When Jesus came to earth he experienced human emotions and characteristics - fatigue, stress, hunger, and sorrow. His own friend Lazarus died, and felt sorrow. He grieved a long with Mary and Martha and those that were with him. He knew what it was like to mourn someone's death. He knew what it was like to morn alongside with his friends (those who didn't realize that Jesus was about to raise Lazarus from the dead). He knew what it was like to have his father turn his back on him. He knew what it was like to experience physical pain. So what does this have to do with the verse? We are tempted when things like this happen to lose faith in Christ, to turn our back on him. And yet he knows how we feel. When Jesus was facing death on the cross do you think it was a temptation for him to abandon ship? Do you think he was tempted to wonder if his Father loved him? I would say that for someone who was sweating drops of blood while he was passionately praying for his Father to take the cup of death away from him, he probably would have rather his Father provide another way for our sin to be pardoned. Yet whatever he was thinking as the mob stole him away to be tortured and crucified, he was resigned to follow his Father's will. So must we realize that as tempting as it is to question God and lose our trust in him, we must be resigned to realizing Adam's death and every trial we face is God's will and it brings us intimately closer with Jesus Christ, the lover of our souls.
4. Your tears are seen by Jesus and you will be comforted. Matthew 5:4 -"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." Sometimes we feel like maybe crying is a weakness or that God expects us to "be strong" and to just trust him. Don't get me wrong, we should trust him. But also, we should understand that God expects us to mourn and he promises us that we will experience his comfort. If you have embraced someone and cried on their shoulder, you know what its like to have those arms around you. You know the comfort that a hug brings. God embraces us. He embraces you now. Run to him accept that embrace. He desires us to be so intimate with him, that we can run to and cry on his shoulder. And consider this; God works through human hands. If your brother or sister in Christ offers to pray with you, cry with you or embrace you, that's God providing comfort to you. We are all ambassadors for Christ. It is proper that we cry with and comfort one another.
5. Our response to death and trial should be one of worship. Probably the hardest aspect of our response to God in times of tragedy and death is worship. Yet this is exactly the example he gives us in David, a man he called "after his own heart. In 2 Samuel 12 David's child becomes sick because God was punishing him for his sin. Don't get me wrong here. I'm not insinuating that Adam's death had to do with God punishing him or any of us because of our sin. My point for bringing up this passage is simply this: David knew his child's death was coming yet he fervently prayed that God would in his mercy spare his son. The comparison here is that our situation is much the same. Adam was nearing death, and we all fervently prayed that God would spare him. That God would heal him of his cancer. God felt it better to relieve Adam of his suffering and pain. When David's son died, his response is somewhat surprising.
2 Samuel 12:20-23. Then David arose from the earth and washed and anointed himself and changed his clothes. And he went into the house of the Lord and worshiped. He then went to his own house. And when he asked, they set food before him, and he ate. 21 Then his servants said to him, “What is this thing that you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while he was alive; but when the child died, you arose and ate food.” 22 He said, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept, for I said, ‘Who knows whether the Lord will be gracious to me, that the child may live?’ 23 But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me.”
I underlined the key aspects of this verse. First of all David worshiped God. David worshiped God for allowing his son to die. In his case it because David had been told his son would die as punishment for David's sin and he knew God was being just. In our case we worship God because we know that Adam knows joy unspeakable in heaven now. That last phrase though is the most important thing we need to remember.
6. "I shall go to him but he will not return to me." This phrase holds a promise. We cannot return Adam to us. We can't bring him back from the dead like Jesus did with Lazarus. But we shall go to him. We will see Adam again. But this time Adam will look amazing. This time he will have a restored, strong, fully healthy heavenly body. And so will we. This time none of us will be suffering, none of us will be crying. We will all be rejoicing on streets of gold with God and the heavenly hosts of Angels. Wow. What a promise. Such hope we have! God taking Adam from us was ultimately an act of Love. God chose to relieve him of his suffering and take him to a place where he has joy and peace unspeakable. So take this comfort brothers and sisters. Take this promise and let it fill you with peace, comfort and Joy. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:6-7)."
I would like to say one final thing. Assuredly not every one who knew Adam is a born again believer in Christ. If you are reading this and you have this hope, please share it with those who don't. Take an opportunity to be a shining testimony for Christ by showing them that while you mourn now, you have an amazing and glorious hope and because of Christ, even in the midst of tragedy, you can have joy, drawing close to your loving heavenly Father. May all who read this have peace and comfort in Christ Jesus our Lord.