I opened my eyes and wondered why I was lying on the floor. I became even more confused when I saw the expressions of shock and fear on my friends’ faces. What happened? I found out that I had had a medical emergency. I had no pulse and wasn’t breathing. My colleague had to do CPR on me to save my life. I was taken to the hospital. The doctors couldn’t find a reason for what had happened, and I’ve been fine every since, but this incident got me thinking: what if my friend hadn’t been there to resuscitate me? I would no longer be among the living.
There is nothing like a brush with death to make you think about life. It helps to clarify your priorities and sheds light on what you really believe. It confronts you with the most important question of all: are you ready for that inevitable day when your time on earth is up?
This incident helped me realize more clearly than ever before that I didn’t have to fear death. This doesn’t mean that I’m looking forward to it, or that I feel no apprehension about the form it will take. But the cause for fear – the unknown – is gone. I know where I’m heading.
This may sound very presumptuous, but I assure you that my confidence isn’t based on anything that I’ve done! It is founded on the promises of God, and on what Christ has done on the cross. It’s very simple, really. Christ died so that we might live. As the Apostle John writes, the person who has the Son (Jesus) has eternal life. He goes on to emphasize that such an individual can be absolutely certain of his or her eternal destiny (1 Jn 5:11-13).
As a child I was in church so much, you could say I grew up there. I heard all about Jesus. But one day I realized that He wasn’t my Savior. There’s a difference between knowing about someone, and knowing them personally. With Jesus it’s no different. In my case, my experience with Him had only been hearsay. I had never put my trust in Him. When I grasped this truth, I prayed right on the spot, confessing my sin and asking Him to save me. And at that moment my relationship with Jesus started. From then on, I had the Son, and with Him eternal life.
Going back to my near-death experience, although I was very thankful to be alive, I was even more grateful that Christ enabled me to face my own mortality with a sense of peace and calm. I knew I had Jesus because I had asked Him to save me on that day so many years ago. I have experienced His presence in my life ever since. He promised that if we have the Son, we have the assurance of spending eternity with Him. There is nothing to fear.