Preparing to Die

“When I die, I want you to…”


I was shocked and angry after my husband began this conversation. Why in the world was he talking to me like this? We just got married!


After many, “When I die, I want you to…” conversations, I put an end to emotionally shutting down and started listening. As time passed though, I forgot what he said and asked him if he could remind me. Realizing that I better be prepared for when he dies; reality was finally hitting home.


As a wife, my job revolves around him. With him out of the picture, I would be lost. Of course, I would go on living, taking care of the kids etc., but a large piece of my identity and responsibility would be gone. He, the leader, is responsible for what God has given him and he wants his family prepared. I better do my job well and follow his lead.


“Get married and get married quick…”


Being told this as a new bride is as strange as anyone would think. Aghast at the thought of marrying someone so soon after my beloved husband dies is nerve wrecking. But, I can’t fight with his reasoning: The children need to have a father in their lives and I need a provider.


“Educate and train…”


I have never met someone who values education like my husband does. No, I am not talking about an education that gives a piece of paper. Frankly, many people have piles of paper and they are dumb as bricks. But my systematic husband has it all planned out–an elementary through high school education sprinkled with catechism, life skills, and most importantly, the Gospel. Passing on a solid foundation to his progeny is a priceless inheritance.


“We are going to pay off the house…”


My husband, in his twenties, wants to make sure that if dies early, his family is taken care of. One way to decrease expenses is not having a mortgage. So, as Dave Ramsey says, “Beans and rice.” The Lord has provided for us in so many ways. We just tighten the belt and press on. Putting extra money every month towards the principle has us paying off the house 10 years sooner and a load off my husband’s back.

My Husband: The Realist


While being young, talking about when you die is an unusual conversation. It’s unnatural to think about dying young. Besides the fact that we were created to live forever and to die is so counter to our original nature, it is odd to think of such things. In spite of this, my husband, the realist, has been preparing to die for quite some time. It is an example for me to live sober mindedly.


I recently heard a friend talking about her and her husband’s will. They are in their early 40’s and do not have one. If these parents of two adorable children were to get killed in a car accident today, their children would be wards of the state and who knows what would happen to their property. We need to be as prepared as we can if we or our spouse dies unexpectedly. Even if it means having a strange and somewhat scary conversation beginning with, “When I die, I want you to…”


We are called to live sober minded and to be good stewards. I want to be like my husband: looking forward to being with the Lord, living peaceably with men, teaching children God’s way, and redeeming the time. Life is short and we do not know what the future holds. I take comfort in God’s sovereignty over us. May he give us wisdom for each day that we have, and be as prepared as we can for when the unexpected happens.

For Further Discussion:


Dave Ramsey on The Importance of Having a Will

Death: The Last Enemy by Tim Challies

About Nicole Leaman

Nicole Leaman is a wife and mother of two daughters. With a degree in Criminal Justice, she actively blogs about social matters regarding women and culture.

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