It is obvious that God does not have favourites. That there is a ramdomness of whom God takes before their time. He does not have favourites even those who regularly acknowledge and worship Him no matter how ferverent. I'm often reminded of Forest Gump's line "life is like a box of chocolates", there is a randomness in death; which at times I think we can change the odds.
It would appear that lifestyle can change the odds. Moderation with alcohol, eating healthily, positive relationships within and outside the family. I would also write a centeredness which is often found in Church or wherever people slow down and have time to contemplate. The thing though even with these positives in a persons life it dosn't guarente anything. It just lowers the odds.
There is a quote going around at the moment by a Sioux Indian Vine Deloria::
I like it; there is an idea for me that Heaven has already been touched, it has been experienced. That there is no more fear to be had through death. Its not about somthing unknown on the other side. It is somthing about life, beauty, joy.....
"Religion is for people who are afraid of going to Hell
Spirituality is for those who have already been there"
This I would think is the biggest way in which we can change the odds.