One of my best friends texted me at 0530-ish hrs this morning to see if I was awake. I was, and she then called to tell me that her mother-in-law had passed away last night and that her husband was only four hours away when he got the news, and is proceeding down to Utah as I write this at 0622 hrs in the morning. My friend had called all the family. She and I were planning on hanging out together today, and I asked her if she still wanted to do that or if she just needed some time. She was still eager to hang out and asked if I would be her chauffeur to go get some card making supplies and such. Of course! One thing that my friend was not was sad. She was happy for her mother-in-law. Why, you might ask? It has to do with eternal perspective. Allow me to explain.
Those who are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe in eternal life and eternal families, thus the heavy emphasis on the Temple, families, and genealogy (family history). Latter-day Saints believe that families can be together forever through certain Temple ordinances. The Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, found in The Book of Mormon, along with further revelation on Gospel Doctrine in the Doctrines & Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price, explains that people can be together with their families for all eternity if all of the proper ordinances are performed by them or for them by proxy in the Holy Temple. We also know from the Old and New Testaments of The Holy Bible that, if one believes in Jesus Christ as their Redeemer and His Atonement for the sins of all mankind, that death has no power over the individual and that death is simply a transition into immortality, peace, and rest with God the Eternal Father and Jesus Christ, His Only Begotten Son (the Savior). These people have every reason in the world to rejoice for their dearly departed loved ones! Though they may be saddened by the loss in mortality of that loved one, they have much to be grateful for in terms of that loved one’s future in most cases. Mourning is appropriate and happens, but death is also a celebration of sorts. That loved one is no longer suffering upon death nor are they unhappy or in pain — quite the contrary! This is the eternal perspective that I speak of. It is a very healthy mindset and allows Latter-day Saints to live confidently no matter the circumstances. Yes, they are human, but they have the eternal perspective and hope to get through the toughest of times.