An Economy of Abundance
In contrast to the logic of scarcity with which we are all too familiar, Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann put his finger on the pulse of God's economy by describing it as a "liturgy of abundance." God's economy, he pointed out, assumes the abundance of creation and so refuses the miserly hoarding and competition yielded by the myth of scarcity. It's Pharoah's logic, he suggested, that generates an economy of fear: "There's not enough.
Sooner or later all of us must face up to death. Energetic adolescents ignore it, and their middle-aged parents often pursue illusions of perpetual youth. But the elderly and terminally ill know better. Nothing in life is as certain as death. And we all wonder what happens when our friends and loved ones die.
Henry was dying of throat cancer. He knew it; his wife, Joan, knew it; their two grown children knew it; and the doctors knew it. But he wasn't dying quickly, and it wasn't painless. It was a slow, agonizing, painful dying. The most the pain medications could do was take the fiercest edge off the pain. He could live for weeks before his body succumbed to the cancer. The disease and the pain it brought had already beaten down his will to live, as well as the will of everyone else involved. Everyone wanted the pain to stop, even if it meant Henry's death.