I am ready to die.
Wait. Before you panic and call the suicide watch on me, let me clarify: I am NOT going to kill myself. I am not suicidal. I am not planning on this to be my last blog post before the end. I promise. Relax.
This isn’t the unrelenting hopelessness of depression for which death seems to be the only relief. I’ve been there, but not this time. This time, for however long it lasts, I can actually laugh and mean it. When I wake up in the morning, it doesn’t seem like the saddest thing on earth to still be here. There’s a cautious optimism in my thoughts. People with bipolar disorder are familiar with what these are: the good days. Or rather, the bittersweet days, because I know it won’t always be like this.
There’s also the kind of being ready to die that has to do with fulfillment. I’m not there yet, not by a long shot. There are little dreams and big dreams still unfulfilled. I haven’t seen a sunrise from a mountain top yet, or watched my little brother grow up to be a good man, or found the right person to love. I still want to be a youth counselor, and plant the garden of my dreams, and slow dance on the beach. I am only twenty-four years old — what do I know of life? Not very much, and there is still so much to discover. Yet I mean it when I say that I am ready to die.
I am ready to die because I know that no matter what I can find here on earth — the pain, the bitterness, the joy, the thrill, and all the possibilities — there is something better. So much better. This is just a prelude, a taste, of what could be. Of what will be. I am ready to let go of whatever the world has to offer, because it cannot possibly compete with what has been promised to me, that I will someday see the One who loves me most face to face. My Jesus, my rescuer and joy-giver. The one who will hold me close in His arms and heal every hurt and make my heart whole in His presence. What earthly sight or pleasure can be more wonderful than that?
So death doesn’t scare me, because I know it for what it is. A doorway. Someday, I don’t know when, I will walk through that door and step into the truest kind of life of which this one is only a pale imitation. And the amazing thing is that this is made possible not by the way I lived on earth, but by the way Someone died on Calvary hundreds of lifetimes before my own. If dying means getting to meet that Someone, then I am ready to die. Or, more accurately, I am ready to live.