In reading Mark 16 the scene lays out with Mary Magdalene and Mary mother of James and Salome bringing spices to Jesus’ tomb. Filled with grief they hadn’t thought of the fact that it would be impossible to roll the stone away from Jesus’ tomb by themselves. It is ordinary for people to go through these emotions during a time of great loss. We find it difficult to think straight because we are filled with this flood of emotions that are hard to control. Basic decisions are even hard to make during these times.
Planning for burial can be a most traumatic thing for family when a loved one is near death or has died. That is why it is important if possible, to make plans ahead of time. In our society we have a tendency to want to avoid such topics. We too many times are concerned about the challenges of life to think that it will one day end for ourselves, but it will eventually. One though can make arrangements ahead of time with your local funeral home of your choice. It will save your family the trauma of having to make these decisions after you have died.
Many times families want for their loved one the very best funeral possible. Emotions are riding high and feelings of loss and possibly regret compel one to do what is not prudent. Elaborate coffins and vaults are bought that are a great financial drain later to the family. By making preparations ahead of time for yourself, these issues can be resolved already for your loved ones.
Some funeral homes have programs that you can put monthly installments into a fund that pays for your funeral. If that is not possible, you can set up a savings program that will specifically cover such a cost at your bank. In this direction, it is prudent to check with your funeral director to find out what the costs might be, and then it will be easier to put the right amount of savings aside.
Another person that you should talk to is your pastor. He/she coordinates the details of the service that will be given for you. Music arrangements, food choices and costs for the meal and who will speak at the funeral can be covered at that time. Again, this is a topic that we do not like to think about, but it is a loving act of kindness toward your family to prepare these items ahead of time if possible.
Finally, if money is an issue for you or your family, some funeral homes have economy packages that can save you and your family from having to spend beyond your means. These details can be covered with your funeral director when meeting with them. Though it might seem a little hard to say, “Funerals are for the living, not the dead!” A funeral director told this statement to me one day. I puzzled over it for a while and then came to the conclusion that he was right. It is a time to say goodbye, meet family and friends during this time of grief, and to share our hearts with loved ones. We talk about the person that has died and share about our life with them. It helps us to go on knowing that we are all carrying the loss together.