Life is short.

When I dig in the dirt later this morning, I will be thinking of Jacob Edfeldt. He was a student at Shorter. He had two heart transplants in his young life, the second one in 2007. This second new heart was rejected last week, and Jacob died.

This news has cut across our campus and left a gash in our community. Jacob was truly beloved. To meet him, you would never have thought he had seen the inside of a hospital, much less had two heart transplants. He was a joyful person who brought joy to others.

So today, when I plant a flower my daughter brought home from Young Scholars camp, I will be thinking of and praying for Jacob’s family, who are burying Jacob this morning.

I will be thinking of 1 Corinthians 15:42-57:

So it is with the resurrection of the dead. What is sown is perishable, what is raised is imperishable. It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. It is sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a physical body, there is also a spiritual body. Thus it is written, “The first man, Adam, became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual that is first, but the physical, and then the spiritual. The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. As was the man of dust, so are those who are of the dust; and as is the man of heaven, so are those who are of heaven. Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we will also bear the image of the man of heaven. What I am saying, brothers and sisters, is this: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I will tell you a mystery! We will not all die, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable body must put on imperishability, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled: “Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”

And when I drive to Powder Springs at noon for Jacob’s memorial service, I will be thanking God through tears for the short life of this astonishing young man.

Jacob, you are missed, and we thank God that we knew you for a time that was all too short for us all.

About Carmen

I teach English at Shorter College in beautiful Rome, Georgia.
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