Remember Death by Matthew McCullough, Free for CAPC Members
Matthew McCullough suggests that death awareness allows us to find joy in the problems of this world.
Every Wednesday in Holy Relics, Martyn Jones explores artifacts unique to Christian subculture.
If you have a seatbelt, please put it on. The releases your parents signed won’t cover a car accident. Actually, Jason, is that true?
I don’t know, I’ll have to —
Well, just in case the release doesn’t cover a car accident, please put your seatbelts on. We’re not moving until everyone has a seatbelt on.
Yeah, it looks like it’s got something about car accidents.
Well, put your seatbelts on, anyway. Um, Jason, could you put a seatbelt on too?
The passenger seat buckle broke off last time I fastened it. Looks like it’s still clipped to the end of the belt.
Oh. Well, I guess you’re exempt then. Maybe wrap the belt around your shoulder though?
You’re joking, right?
Well, I just want everybody to be safe.
* * *
Hey, Jason, you awake?
Yeah, what’s up?
Just feeling sort of drowsy. I don’t want to turn the music up since the kids are all dozing back there.
Yeah, that’s probably a good call.
I want you to know that you spoke really well today. God is really doing something in your life, and I want to affirm that.
Thanks. That means a lot, Pastor K. And yeah, I mean, I was feeling it. The Holy Spirit, yeah.
Yep. He was moving.
I guess I do wish there were fewer repeats for the invitation at the end.
Well, thing is, I figure that’s something you’d probably run into anywhere.
I suppose that’s probably true. Well, thanks, Pastor K.
Now would you look at that sky… praise God.
Praise Him, yeah. Wow.
* * *
Okay, everyone put your hands where I can see them! Five four three two Miranda where are your hands! I can’t see your hands! Peter! Nope, separate them! You can’t hold hands when I ask you to show your hands! I’ll pull this van over, you guys. Just raise your separate hands, please? Ok, good, good, who’s missing? Elijah? Where are your hands? Oh, he’s asleep? Okay, well, all right then, everyone, thanks. You can go back to sleep.
* * *
But what did God do with all that time before He made the creation?
What do you mean, Kevin?
Well, like, why did God wait so long to make everything? And why did He decide to make it when He did, I guess?
Well, that’s not something that Scripture directly speaks to, so —
But come on, Pastor K, haven’t you thought about it before?
Sure, I guess.
I mean, look at the sky right now. Those stars are millions of light years away, and their light is just getting here, but the world is only 6,000 years old. So what if — seriously — God was just stretching out those star beams and everything, like, making it all in an alternate dimension, and then when He made the world He was like, “Surprise!” and brought out all this stuff He’d already made somewhere else, basically. Like parents at their kid’s birthday party, they have all the stuff already in another room, even though they just made the baby, like, new?
Well, Kevin, I think —
Also, sort of related, have you ever thought about how our dimension is maybe like one cube inside a massive Rubik’s cube, and how maybe that cube is also inside a Rubik’s cube, and maybe how the creation is maybe God’s ultimate Rubik’s cube? Like this one? Like, did I show you this one already?
You know, I think Pastor Jason might be able to help you with some of these questions when he wakes up.
* * *
Hey Pastor Jason?
What’s up, Kevin?
Have you ever thought about how maybe the universe is God’s ultimate Rubik’s cube?
Nice. Also, when you gave the talk at the lodge, were you thinking of anyone in particular?
What do you mean?
Well, like, did you have people in mind about the lust thing, or was that just about anyone?
Well, I guess I had myself in mind. That’s definitely something I’ve struggled with.
Yeah. But like, did you have anyone in mind who’s, you know, in the youth group or church or something? You don’t have to tell me any names, but I was just wondering if you were thinking about anyone in the youth group.
Kevin, I’m afraid that even if I did have anyone in mind, I probably wouldn’t tell you because it isn’t helpful.
Well, you told me when it was you.
Yeah, well that’s because –
Nevermind, I was just asking. I dunno. I just, like — do you know what Peter and Mir —
I’m just saying.
* * *
Holy — oh, that’s disgusting.
What is it, Jason?
Someone must have poured some Coke into the passenger side cup-holder months ago and I just stuck my hand in it to see if there was any change and now I’ve got this stuff all over my hands.
Well, I guess we should probably —
It feels like Gorilla Glue.
Yeah, we should —
Look at this. The vinyl peeled off when I tried wiping my hand on the door panel.
I suppose that when we get back —
Now the yellow spongy stuff from inside the door is on my hand. Do we have any water or anything?
We’ll have to get some at the rest stop.
Well, I guess I’ll put my arm out the window so I don’t — oh come on.
I forgot about the manual window. Guess I’m going to just, well, hold my hand out in front of me.
Just don’t touch the console. I’m pretty sure the airbag might deploy if you put your hand on the console.
* * *
Hopefully we won’t need to stop again before we’re back.
Yeah. Gosh. I can hardly believe the sun will be coming out when we pull back into the church parking lot.
Northern Wisconsin is a long haul.
That’s for sure.
Yeah, Pastor K?
Do you think the kids had a good time up there?
Yeah, you know, I think they did. Some of them weren’t as into, you know, the snowshoeing and stuff, but in general, I think this was a success.
Worth the 10 hour drive for the short retreat?
I mean, it would work better for a longer retreat, I think, but the weekend getaway was definitely still worth doing once, I figure.
Yeah. I hope so.
Pastor K, I was meaning to —
Jason, look out!
Oh my! God help —
Jesus is the Lord! Jesus is the Lord! Jesus is-!
Is everyone okay? Hands up if you’re okay! One, two, three… Miranda and Peter, please, well… is Elijah okay? I can’t see his — still asleep? Okay. Okay, I think we’re all okay. Whew!
Are you all right, Pastor K?
Yes, I think I am. Boy, did I think we were going to… well, have some releases to appeal to. In court. For a lot of accidental deaths. Of children between the ages of 13-17.
Um, what’s that wrapped around your shoulder?
I guess it’s the seatbelt?
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