Plan your funeral | creed of jesus

“Do you want to be cremated or do you want a full burial?” Not the kind of conversation you’d think my wife and I would have over a romantic dinner date, but we were there. We had to do it and we postponed it. So, we made a plan for dinner, and while we were having dinner, we went over all the questions we would have if the other died first.

Do you want church service?

Do you want music? If so, what kind of music will it be and who do you want to sing it with?

Who do you want to talk to ?

What are your account passwords?

Who do you want to be informed of your death?

Do you want flowers or would you like to recommend donations to a favorite charity instead of flowers?

The questions follow one another. These are the questions your family will have to answer when you die. Not only that, but they’ll have to try and find the costume or dress you want to be buried in while they’re overwhelmed with grief. The circumstances of your death will determine how much energy your family has to plan your service. If you died after a full and long life, while resting in bed surrounded by your family, or unexpectedly in a plane crash. It makes a difference.

How relieved and grateful your family will be if they can get a notebook containing all your wishes and necessary information that you have carefully organized. You will have relieved them of the crisis of having to make decisions when they are not in a mental or emotional state to make any decisions. Plus, they’ll be relieved to know that they’re planning your funeral the way you wanted.

Why should you do this? Because you are going to die. New to you? Sooner or later it happens to all of us. Our heart stops beating. We stop breathing and then someone has to do something with our body. Someone needs to call the funeral home. Someone has to plan the service. There is a lot to do. How easier it is to be able to work off the list you have prepared for your family that shows who needs to be called.

And as you plan your service, you realize that the life you live is the sermon that will be preached. As a preacher who’s done a lot of funerals, I can tell you there’s not much we can do. We cannot take – let’s say, a colorful life – and transform you into Saint Therese in the few minutes given to us between the last song and the last prayer. Your life will be what we preach – for better or for worse.

This brings up this final reminder. You don’t have as much time as you think. Everyone thinks that one day they will succeed in life. They will mend all broken relationships, love their neighbors and change the world. Here’s the problem – a day never comes. Death comes like a thief in the night and it comes when you least expect it. If you’re gonna love someone, you better do it today. Need to mend a broken relationship? Better do it today.

Tomorrow is promised to no one.

So sit down and write your will. Plan your funeral. If you love your family, do it. And then, live your life each day knowing that this day might be your last. Give your pastor too many stories to fit into an hour-long service. Give your family something to celebrate.

If you love your family, plan your funeral. If you love your family, live so that everyone you love won’t miss your funeral for the world.