Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4
Just got back from a funeral of a guy I knew in high school who had a rather tragic death. I got to see quite a few friends there. Some of which I stay in pretty good contact while others I haven't seen practically since high school. We did a lot of reminiscing, a little talking, hugging... I find it difficult when hanging out with that group of friends because most of them are either atheists or Mormons. All of them know I am a believer (and a few of them even know I've moved to more of a Messianic faith) and I've even had talks about faith on a deeper level with a few of them. But overall we stick to just the regular stuff, "So what do you do now? How's the family? Where are you living? How's the weather like-?".
Its fun to see these friends. They're really physically affectionate which I love :). But, also... it makes my stomach hurt and makes me deeply sad at times.
Funerals are so humbling for me. Beliefs about the afterlife are SO different! Even (and almost especially) in all the areas of Christianity. Being someone who is fairly opinionated and passionate (though maybe not always vocally) about what I believe about things, God really showed me this time, when I was really frustrated with what was being said at the funeral (because I disagreed with it) God was sort of quieting me. He was reminding me that really, every person on this earth cannot have an absolutely true understanding of what happens when we die. Though I am super confident about YHVH, who He is and what He's about (though I obviously don't know everything) the afterlife is not super discussed fully in the Bible, thus I have an idea, but I understand that we all do not have a perfect knowledge of it. Its really a mystery.
I really struggled with wanting to go to this funeral or not, but I feel like God might have had me go to really, just love. Just show my support. Be a shoulder to cry on. Hands and ears to comfort. And really silently pray for the comfort and true salvation of my friends.
I definitely think there is a time to share faith, to question friends beliefs and challenge them to examine their lives. I also believe, God is teaching me this a TON lately, that there is a time for everything. This time was a time to be present and be quite and let God do some ministering.