One of my friends shared with me an essay, part of a chain mail, written by a 17-year-old boy of his vision of heaven that I want to share with you. The young man’s family believe he is in heaven[he died from electrocution after hitting a utility pole].You can weigh in too. I don’t know how one can interpret this essay to the point that it is proof heaven exists and that this young man is in the heaven he described!
For those who live on faith, I know they see a lot in this email and would want to believe strongly that heaven exists and they will be going there some time in the near future. I have no such hope for the existence of heaven and if one were to exist, I don’t see how a future life would be better than the one we have here and now. I compare to saying I will have a bad life in my youth since old age awaits me, what nonsense this is!
That said here is the essay
In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room. There were no distinguishing features except for the one wall covered with small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endless in either direction, had very different headings. As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read “Girls I Have Liked.”I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names written on each one. And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was. This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every moment, big and small, in a detail my memory couldn’t match. A sense of wonder and curiosity, coupled with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening files and exploring their content. Some brought joy and sweet memories; others a sense of shame and regret so intense that I would look over my shoulder to see if anyone was watching.
How could this be a surprise, he must have known the names of all the girls he has liked. He is only 17 and who forgets names of girls he has liked? Besides, what makes this room heaven and since this is his creative imagination, how somebody takes it to accurately represent another reality beats me!
A file named “Friends” was next to one marked “Friends I Have Betrayed.” The titles ranged from the mundane to the outright weird.”Books I Have Read,””Lies I Have Told,””Comfort I have Given,””Jokes I Have Laughed At.” Some were almost hilarious in their exactness: “Things I’ve Yelled at My Brothers.” Others I couldn’t laugh at: “Things I Have Done in My Anger”,”Things I Have Muttered Under My Breath at My Parents.” I never ceased to be surprised by the contents. Often there were many more cards than expected. Sometimes fewer than I hoped. I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of the life I had lived.
All I need to imagine all this is to keep a diary. And for a 17-year-old, you have so many reasons to cuss at your parents; there is always the feeling that they are the enemy. Besides I see nothing here out of the ordinary that with a creative imagination one can’t recreate. It is not the story of another person’s life but the one you have lived and even with our always faulty memory, you can create a believable story of the past.
Could it be possible that I had the time in my years to fill each of these thousands or even millions of cards? But each card confirmed this truth. Each was written in my own handwriting. Each signed with my signature.
Definitely, you are 17 years old unless you were a hermit you’d still have a story to tell!
When I pulled out the file marked”TV Shows I Have Watched,” I realized the files grew to contain their contents. The cards were packed tightly, and yet after two or three yards, I hadn’t found the end of the file. I shut it, shamed, not so much by the quality of shows but more by the vast time I knew that file represented. When I came to a file marked”Lustful Thoughts,” I felt a chill run through my body. I pulled the file out only an inch, not willing to test its size, and drew out a card. I shuddered at its detailed content. I felt sick to think that such a moment had been recorded. An almost animal rage broke on me.
This kid must have loved TV. I have watched very few TV shows and this days I don’t have the time to watch TV so I would write my TV shows in two cards I guess. The point where he gets animal rage about lustful thoughts is the effect of christianity on the young man. The pastor tells you to think somethings is against the law of god and you develop guilt and shame. How can you feel guilty and shame for acting as per your nature? Is it not then the failure of the creator to give you a mind that can think about this matters and then make the thoughts criminal! I don’t want such a god! And animal rage is a correct statement, we are animals!
One thought dominated my mind: No one must ever see these cards! No one must ever see this room! I have to destroy them!” In insane frenzy I yanked the file out. Its size didn’t matter now. I had to empty it and burn the cards. But as I took it at one end and began pounding it on the floor, I could not dislodge a single card. I became desperate and pulled out a card, only to find it as strong as steel when I tried to tear it. Defeated and utterly helpless, I returned the file to its slot. Leaning my forehead against the wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh.
This kid must have had a busy mind! To have such a file he couldn’t move. I can’t equal his in my almost 30 years of being around 🙂
And then I saw it. The title bore”People I Have Shared the Gospel With.” The handle was brighter than those around it, newer, almost unused. I pulled on its handle and a small box not more than three inches long fell into my hands. I could count the cards it contained on one hand. And then the tears came. I began to weep. Sobs so deep that they hurt. They started in my stomach and shook through me. I fell on my knees and cried. I cried out of shame, from the overwhelming shame of it all. The rows of file shelves swirled in my tear-filled eyes. No one must ever, ever know of this room.. I must lock it up and hide the key. But then as I pushed away the tears, I saw Him.
I think this is where he should have been happiest but he feels sad that he didn’t have a great opportunity to spread the christian nonsense! Am glad the list was small, christianity for a long time and even now has slowed down progress in many scientific fields, have made many men believers and not thinkers, have made many good men slaves of dogma and still does. Why is it Jesus he sees, not Buddha, not Gandhi, not Martin Luther King ,heck, why not my late mother? Is this not part of the christian conditioning?
No, please not Him. Not here. Oh, anyone but Jesus. I watched helplessly as He began to open the files and read the cards. I couldn’t bear to watch His response. And in the moments I could bring myself to look at His face, I saw a sorrow deeper than my own. He seemed to intuitively go to the worst boxes. Why did He have to read every one? Finally He turned and looked at me from across the room.. He looked at me with pity in His eyes. But this was a pity that didn’t anger me. I dropped my head, covered my face with my hands and began to cry again. He walked over and put His arm around me. He could have said so many things. But He didn’t say a word. He just cried with me.
I thought this was his vision of heaven, why then object at seeing Jesus? Who did he expect to find?
Then He got up and walked back to the wall of files.. Starting at one end of the room, He took out a file and, one by one, began to sign His name over mine on each card. “No!” I shouted rushing to Him. All I could find to say was “No, no,” as I pulled the card from Him. His name shouldn’t be on these cards. But there it was, written in red so rich, so dark, and so alive. The name of Jesus covered mine. It was written with His blood. He gently took the card back He smiled a sad smile and began to sign the cards. I don’t think I’ll ever understand how He did it so quickly, but the next instant it seemed I heard Him close the last file and walk back to my side. He placed His hand on my shoulder and said, “It is finished.”
If he is using his blood to write, he must have grown very old or how is this heaven? Friends help me here, how is it possible that a being of flesh and blood doesn’t age?
I stood up, and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on its door. There were still cards to be written.
Can we all agree this is wishful thinking?
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
Why is this conditional? If as christians would want us to believe what is the point in asking us to believe in him as the condition of entry to heaven when one can’t choose to believe or not?