There’s a funeral across the road today.
Despite the freezing temperatures and impending storm, the car park is full. Friends and family fill the church to say a last goodbye to their lost loved one. At the end, the church bells toll, mournfully. The honour guard of veterans file out and line up behind the hearse, saluting as the casket is brought out.
It never ceases to make me think how that little wooden box is smaller than you would expect it to be. It never seems big enough.
I always look at the coffins and think, “I’m sure he was taller than that.”
But the real discrepancy is not in the stature of the man compared to the size of the coffin, but of the life of the one being carried within it.
Does it really come down to this?
One man’s lifetime of love and adventures, more than most judging by the honour guard, the average age and the number of mourners. Does it all it come down to wooden box that seems too small?
But then I realise something I hadn’t thought of until I sat down to write this.
The measure of this man, the measure of his life, isn’t to be found within that box or even reflected by its size. His life can be measured by those that came to say goodbye. By the sorrow on their faces for the loss of their friend. By the honour guard, standing proud and straight and stronger than their years, to escort their comrade from this world to the next.
And as the snow begins to fall, I can’t help but think, who will be there to measure my life for all to see?