This summer, my husband and I have been in the process of updating our will, health papers and other such legal documents. In the midst of this progression, the subject of long term health care insurance continues to come up. The question for us is how to find the proper balance between making adequate preparation for an uncertain future and the daunting expense of this type of policy. The experience of my Dad’s recent slow end of life degeneration and the enormous benefit that his insurance coverage provided for my mom still fresh on my mind makes this subject feel way more pressing and important than maybe it is to others (including Clif). But since this type of coverage continues to morph wildly, the reality is that policies available today just aren’t the same as what my folks (and people like them) bought a decade ago, nor is the price even close to the equivalent. A quick search of long term care insurance can make you gasp at the expected monthly outlay (if you can even qualify) !!
In light of this, there are some people who advocate playing the odds and hoping that the end to their lives will be relatively quick (and inexpensive), others might opt for trying store up enough to cover their own expenditures, but majority of us probably just choose the ostrich approach and stick our heads in the sand, ignoring the whole question while hoping for the best. Unfortunately, choosing the wrong option in this case can be financially devastating to yourself, your spouse and/or all your children. The real kicker is that once you realize you’ve made the wrong decision, it will be too late to change your mind and choose a different path.
As significant as these health and end of life decisions are, making the right choice about spiritual health is an issue that’s much more critical and that has far more significance than your choice of assisted living homes. And just as with health care, it’s easy to push the question aside and be lulled into believing there’s plenty of time to explore options before making a choice until one day we realize it’s too late to do anything about it. But the truth is, because we are born in a sinful condition, all people have a trajectory already set. Ephesians 2 says that when you come into the world, “you were dead in your transgressions and sins”, and Romans 3:23 makes it clear that “all have sinned and fallen short.”
But the good news is that the Holy Spirit is the flawless agent who works on our behalf, pointing us to the only comprehensive plan that can insure our eternal health, a policy that has already been fully paid for by the blood of Jesus Christ. Through His atoning work -credited to us by faith-, we become the “heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ”. (Rom. 8:17) It’s because of God’s compassion and great heart of concern for our situation that He sent Jesus Christ to pay the premium for sin so we don’t suffer an eternal penalty, and the guaranteed pay-out is the glorious benefit of restoration, wholeness and eternal life with Him.
That’s why it’s never too early to address this decision. Death is an event that you can’t avoid, and can’t always see coming. Now is the time to see the only options clearly. There is no self-pay option. Let Jesus underwrite your future and trust Him to deliver on the promise “that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.” (John 6:40)