I went out to my garden early yesterday morning to check on my plants. I wanted to ensure nothing was eating them and eliminate any harmful bugs. The first thing I saw was some of my cosmos lying on the ground; they were flowers I planted to help draw the insects away from my peas. Something had cut them off right at the base! I decided to pull back the layer of mulch and see if I could find anything, and there it was, the culprit, a caterpillar! He wasn’t eating the stems; he just cut them off for no good reason. He had cut his last stem in my garden. Those flowers were beginning to flourish, and it’s disappointing to have to throw them out. It shows that not everything planted in the garden will make it.
I also went to a funeral yesterday. We didn’t know the person who died; we were there for her brother, so we were unsure of the status of her salvation. However, the priest prayed for her to get out of purgatory to go into Heaven. Though it seems like a nice thing to do, praying for the dead is not biblical. If you don’t decide to follow Jesus before you die, you won’t get into Heaven. No amount of prayer by the living will help. There is no holding area called purgatory, waiting for the prayers of others to help you. You must make that decision in the flesh, or you will be cut off like my cosmos. Pray that all of your family accept Jesus as Savior while they are still alive; it’s too late after they die.
Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. 2 Corinthians 1:9-11