Tuesday, June 03, 2008


"Do you think people who commit suicide go to heaven?," my co-worker asked. The question wasn't just out of the blue; his niece had killed herself a couple of days before.

I don't go around beating people over the head with it, but people in our office/shop know that I am a Christian. This co-worker and I have had several discussions about religion/Christianity over the past 20 years we've known each other. In fact, he is a fairly new Christian, having come to faith in Christ just a couple of years ago. I didn't "lead" him to Christ, but I'd like to think that my prayers and witness played a role in his and his family's conversion.

"That's a tough one, " I replied. "Was your niece a Christian?" I asked. Believing that is the prerequisite to one's going to heaven--being a Christian--I figured I might as well start there. He understood why I had asked and wasn't offended by the question. The co-worker stated that the family didn't attend church, but they talked about Jesus alot. None of the children, including the girl that had committed suicide, had gone to church growing up--at least not regularly. The occasional VBS, funeral or wedding. Maybe on Easter or Christmas, but nothing regular. "But I have reason to believe that she surely made some sort of decision or confession of faith at some time in her life," he said. He wasn't real explicit where he got that notion.

For some people, "being a Christian" simply means going to church (every Sunday or at least somewhat of a regular interval). For others, it's having been sprinkled (that ain't baptism, which is an entirely different topic) as a baby, or maybe they went through a class or something. If they signed a card or can claim membership in a church, that's always a good one. Simply believing there is a God will do it for some, while others might take it a step further and say "I know I don't live like I should, but I believe Jesus died for my sins." Whatever they believe, it becomes something to hang their hat on when faced with the reality of death--their own or a loved one's.

It's interesting (and sad) that people don't think about God, or have much to do with Him...until the end.

1 comment:

Baxter said...

Sadly, I know what you mean. :(