About Physical Death

To many people, life after death remains an unsolvable mystery. It is far too awesome for them to comprehend. I like to think, however, that it is best understood as something very simple, very natural.

Some years ago I conducted funeral services for Neil Collum, a good friend and a good man. I look at Neil's casket and I told the people gathered there that Neil Collum was not in that casket; that that was only the body Neil had used on earth; that he himself wasn't there. And then I shared these thoughts that have always been meaningful to me, thoughts about God's love for us: Before Neil was born, when he was in the prenatal state, tucked up under his mother's heart, he was already sensitive to love--even unborn babies are--and this baby was happy there. But suppose somebody had been able to tell this child, "Look, you can't stay here. You're going to be born." That to him would have been death, because it would have meant a change from security to an insecurity. We can imagine the baby thinking, I don't want to be born. I want to stay here. I like it here. I'm comfortable; I'm fed; I'm loved. But there came a day when that baby was born. He left where he was and came into a new world. And here in this new world he felt
loving arms around him, and the first thing he saw was a beautiful face
looking down at him. Everybody ran at his slightest wish to do just what he wanted.

Then he began to grow up and he had some troubles, some hard knocks. But he loved life and he loved the world. Time passed and he became an old man. And the thought came to him, I'm going to die. He said to himself, "I don't want to die. I like it here, I love the stars at night. I love to feel the sun on my face. I love the tangy smells of autumn and to sit in front of a fire on winter evenings warming my old bones. I love my family and my friends. I don't want to die."

But then he did die. Now, do you think God, who provided all that protection and love for his coming into this world and getting started in it, was going to abandon him to gloom and terror when he left it?

"When Neil Collum comes to himself after death," I told Neil's mourners, "what will he see? I believe he will see the kindest face he can imagine looking at him and feel loving arms around him."

Neil is now more alive and loved than he ever was...

Norman Vincent Peale
Guideposts, March 1995,


We are so sorry for your loss. Actual human-to-human support will do you a world of good at this moment in time.

Here's a website we recommend you visit for support from others who have experienced a recent loss.

Go to; www.groww.org/chat

Our prayer is for your peace, comfort and healing. You will heal.