All born to grow and grown to die

Published 8:22 pm Saturday, April 15, 2017

We are all dying. Some of us are just doing it faster than others.

The great Texas singer-songwriter Townes Van Zandt put it best when he said: We’re “all born to grow and grown to die.”

That’s life in a nutshell, really. From the moment we enter this world we are on the path to leaving it.

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“As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. When the wind has passed over it, it is no more, And its place acknowledges it no longer,” Psalm 103:15-16.

“You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure,” Psalm 39:5.

The psalmist knew what we sometimes forget — or choose to ignore. Our days are numbered, and how appropriate that we are reminded of that fact this weekend.

Good Friday was a somber reminder of death. But today is a reminder of Christ’s power over death. The resurrection is the gift that was promised at Christmas.

If Van Zandt had been a believer, he might have added “And born to live again” to his words about mortality.

That’s the beauty of this Easter weekend. We are given the chance to live again. Though we will surely die here on earth, it’s not the last verse for those who believe in Christ. There’s a new chorus about resurrection and rebirth and living again.

Christ’s victory over death is the essential piece of Christian doctrine. Without the resurrection, Jesus was just a good man, a good teacher, or maybe a prophet. Without the resurrection, we have no hope of eternity. How sad would life be if the few years we have on earth are all we get?

Yes, it is sometimes difficult to understand. It is sometimes difficult to believe. And it’s not always easy to sing a new chorus about rebirth and living again. Our dying bodies and selfish hearts try to convince us that what we have here on earth is all that really matters. But make no mistake, our days are numbered.

So this morning, as we celebrate Easter, I hope we actually celebrate it. Not just recognize it. Not just acknowledge it. But really celebrate that Christ defeated death. Of all the things we use to try to convince others to believe in Christ (hope, peace, joy, etc.), it really comes down to his victory over death. That’s all that will matter in the end.

“Where, o death, is your victory? Where, o death, is your sting?”

Publisher Luke Horton can be reached at