by Lisa Coleman
Believe it or not, a large number of people have chosen to be reminded five times a day via a smartphone app that they are going to die. The app, called WeCroak, has more than 10,000 downloads and there are 30,000 monthly users. More than 25 million reminders are sent annually. Most of the messages are simply “Don’t forget, you’re going to die.” Others are equally as somber, “The grave has no sunny corners” and “Those who are afraid of death will carry it on their shoulders.”
The messages are sent “at random times and at any moment just like death.” The founders of the app were inspired by a famous Bhutanese folk saying, which asserts “to be a truly happy person, one must contemplate death five times daily.” The basic idea is that the more we are reminded about the inevitability of death, the more we will “smell the flowers,” and appreciate every moment of life.
Co-founder Hansa Bergwall elaborates:
One of the things that makes us most unhappy is we tend to get caught up in things that don’t matter. We tend to get caught up in minutiae or in stress or in tons of things that ultimately aren’t that important to us. And when we remember our mortality, we can take a deep breath and just go, “Oh, I don’t have to think about this. I don’t have to engage. I don’t have time for this.” And move on.
Bianca Bosker, “The App That Reminds You You’re Going to Die” The Atlantic (January/February, 2020); Eric Johnson, “You’re going to die someday. WeCroak’s Hansa Bergwall says remembering that will make your life better,” Vox (4-24-19).
Tim McGraw sang a song “Live Like You Were Dying”. The lyrics include these lines:
And I loved deeper
And I spoke sweeter
And I gave forgiveness I’d been denying.
And he said
“Someday I hope you get the chance to live like you were dying
Like tomorrow was a gift”
We all know the death rate is 100% down here. We are all dying. Only our timing will vary. The question is what do we do in the meantime?
Should we simply focus on our bucket lists? Relationships? Can we do anything to prepare for death? Where do we gather intel on what’s next? Can we get ready and what does that look like? What can we take with us? Can our understanding of heaven affect our activities, ambitions, recreation, friendships, and the way we spend our money and time? Should it?
So many questions! Join us as we wrap up our Heaven series discussing the Great Adventure ahead.
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More information about this Bible study series can be found at HEAVEN: Peace for Today, Hope for Tomorrow. You can also follow this link to find materials for several additional Bible Studies that are free to download for your personal use.
May God bless you and your study, as you seek to know Him better through the study of His Word.
Yours in Christ,
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