Laura, the kids and I watched a Steve Carell movie the other night called, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World (2012). Spoiler alert: If you don’t want to know what happened, you can skip the next two paragraphs. You have now been properly warned.
Steve Carell plays his typical non-descript, bland character who meanders through life looking for love (which he does quite well). In this movie, however, his character finds love right before the end of the world. He and his new-found love gaze romantically into each other’s eyes as the world is destroyed and . . . the movie ends.
Maybe some viewers come to the end of the movie and say, “How romantic. They found true love, and that’s what’s most important.” Right? Wrong. I’m not intending to sound like a dull, unromantic, but if the end of the world is coming, we’d better find a lot more than just mere human besotted affection.
But guess what? The end of the world is coming. No, I’m not going to carry a sign and shout through a bullhorn while I parade around Monument Circle. But the facts are the facts. This life is temporal, and either we’re going to “age out” or the earth is going to “age out,” but whichever comes first, we’d better get ready. I’m here to tell you that readiness is far more than seeking a friend for the end of the world. That’s a nice thought, but it’s not long-term thinking. We need to seek the Friend who will help us get through the end of the world, and His name is Jesus. He said, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die” (John 11:25, NIV).
I’ve been dwelling on this lately in light of COVID. This pandemic most likely will not bring about the end of the world, but it has brought a LOT of disruption, chaos, pain and death. The question I’ve been asking myself is, How am I living differently as a result of what’s happening? Am I seeking Jesus in a daily practice of prayer, reading of Scripture, silence, solitude, and engaging in deeper relationships?
Rich Mullins wrote a song many years ago that said, “Live like you’ll die tomorrow. Die knowing you’ll live forever.” Hmm. That’s what I choose. COVID or no COVID, the end of the world in fourteen days or long after I’m gone—I want to live like I’ll die tomorrow and know that I’ll live forever.
Is eternity just a religious concept left behind by our less-enlightened forefathers and mothers? Whatever you believe, are you willing to stake your destiny on it?
The Teacher writes that “God has placed eternity in the human heart” (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Let’s choose to live as eternal beings in this temporal world, so that whatever comes—a resurgence of the coronavirus, an economic recession or worse, or if things begin to return to “normal”—we’re living like we’ll die tomorrow, knowing that we’ll live forever.