Tuesday, September 22, 2009

all creation

There's a lot I want to write about this weekend--my birthday was perfect (although it was Wednesday, not this weekend), STIM was amazing, as always, my car broke down and I got stranded in Raleigh which turned out to be pretty awesome, I got tackled by three huge guys while playing ultimate and took a flying knee to the head (that's what, six weeks following the concussion in Romania?) and have a bruised ear, of all things. But this is what's on my mind, and so this is what I have to write about:

I'm watching Armageddon right now (say what you want about it being a terrible movie--maybe it is, but it's a sort of childhood classic for me), and it's the scene where the president is addressing the world about the asteroid. And maybe it is a bad movie, but that part of the movie, that part, it moves me. There are flashes from everywhere, all peoples. It's the French countryside, men with their flocks listening to the address, a boy in some city with a handheld radio looking up at the sky, a crowded mosque, people sitting around a radio somewhere in Asia. Languages I don't know, people whose faces I can't place with a nationality because I just don't know. The president says he doesn't address them as a leader of a country, but as a citizen of humanity.

I know I always talk about this, but the whole world. I think about how there really will be a day when the whole world is listening, faces all turned upward, watching. I think about that song, that all creation would come back to you. All creation. I can't get over that. Several of my really good friends aren't Christians, and try as I might (even though I know it's not me or anything I do), conversation after conversation, people I love so much, our lives shared and intertwined, they just don't believe. What I'm saying is that I can hardly imagine them changing their minds about God, although I hope and hope, much less the whole world, all of creation in its entirety.

These movies, words like 'citizen of humanity,' the way I remember singing with the Romanians, how my friends who went to China worshiped with the nations. There's so much about the world that I have no idea about, that likely I will never know. Do I know anything about Kenyans? I know when they wake up and pray, they shout and cry out and wail even, but what do I know except that reflects God, his people created in his image. But I always forget how there's the whole world of people and hundreds of languages and all these mountains and cultures and stretches of cities and life that, even if I tried, I could never see all of. It goes on and on it's so big and there are so many different kinds of people but one day we'll all be looking up, eyes lifted and I think about the lines that connect all of us, how really we are all drawn from one same line.

I don't know what to say to that, but it completely overwhelms me. I have brothers in India, in North Africa. People whose lives I'll never know anything about, who, whatever you believe or don't believe, share something with me or you that has something to do with the words life and humanity. It's too big for me, so I keep writing and writing, trying to get at it, trying to hold on to this picture of the whole world, but all I have is little pieces, little flashes of some huge thing that's trying to fit itself inside my heart.

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