a nus-to-home bus journey’s worth of thoughts.
“I love studying.”
This strange thought flickered across my mind as I packed my bag for the day, ready to leave for home. What was it exactly I was feeling? Excitement? Thrill? I had just watched the film trailer for the documentary “Urbanized”, and was struck with wonder (the rail shot at 0:58 of the video? amazing.) Intentional design. Design thinking. Product design. Good design. My heart was really pumping now, by all the possibly amazing design that exists in life - so crazy amazing and beautiful. And now I was really really itching to catch the documentary, and other documentaries/shows about design. No, scratch that, I want to contribute to design even, if only I was smarter!
Thoughts spun through my head in all sorts of direction as I headed to the bus-stop. It had been another fairly amazing semester, with crazy interesting modules. Inspiring professors who light-heartedly unravel the social fabric (A/P Volker Schmidt!!! I am still wondering why I didn’t take a photo with him…), thought-provoking films… especially films about religion. In being exposed to so, so, very much, and realising how some films were essentially providing an opinion/making claims that went against my beliefs, I found myself having to consciously think more often, to reiterate my views in my own head, at least, to reconsider matters I have never thought of before, to make coherent sense of my views.
The excitement of learning more about the world - the thrill of seeing good design, uncovering good design, the feeling of having glimpsed a vision, a beautiful dream, a beautiful thing, of wanting to learn more, of wanting to contribute, of wanting to be part of this better, beautiful change, of intentional careful empowering design - what little I know of this world, what many wonderful things I can look forward to, what many crazy amazing things to discover, it’s all so inspiring!
In all this happy haze, of honest infatuation with beautiful things of this world, a little voice pulled me back and asked, “if you are feeling so so in love and inspired with the things in this world, how can you still say “Lord, Your kingdom come”? Where is your desire for the second coming of Christ?”
A second of doubt.
Minutes of reflection.
Many minutes of reflection.
I spent much time mentally checking off what I felt and think about this inspiration and passion. Did I feel guilt about it? No. Was it something shameful, something I would not share about? No either. Has it been stated in the bible that you can’t feel passion and interest? Most certainly not. Do the things I think to be beautiful have true beauty as measured by the bible? Well, yes. Good design for all, to make the quality of life better, to empower the weak - that is beautiful.
But how, how do I make sense of it then? If there are so so many things I want to do in this world, so many things I want to learn about, will I not want to die? In fact, do I even want to die soon? Currently… well. No, not really… Do I expect to die soon? Well./. not really too. Then…? How can I claim my greatest desire is for God? But do I want to meet God? Yes! Do I still want His kingdom to come? Yes! Will I actually have regrets if I do die tomorrow? No! Will I be fine with dying tomorrow? Yes! Will I actually be joyful to die? Yes!
Huh…. what’s going on….
As I walked, I uttered a quick “breath prayer”, for wisdom and guidance, for an alignment of desires, for my top desire to still be for God. And got onto the bus, and sat, still thinking, still pondering.
If I can find things that seem so amazingly beautiful now in this world, how much more mind-blowing and amazing would heaven be? In fact, how incredibly unimaginable it would be! Everything of beauty now is still a fractured broken reflection of reality, of simple beauty, glory and radiance.
It has always been a question mark how exactly the “lifestyle”, for lack of a better word, would be in heaven, but a few things I know - no pain, no tears, no struggle or conflict, amazing, amazing joy. The happiness and joy I feel now and then again is but a fragment of the joy that lies in wait. Also, crazy amazingly, we will still work - meaningfully and productively.
My brain may be kinda worn out for recording this at night, but this sudden thought just struck me… Marx’s vision of man as meaningful producers is sounding a lot like the vision of heaven. Perhaps a superficial similarity, but, hmm.
As I walked back home from the bus-stop, I saw an old crippled man buying bread. And then things came together. For every beautiful thing in this world, for every new vision to make things better, for every desire to make things beautiful, there is something fractured, there is a broken wish, an unfulfilled dream. There is pain, and there is suffering. And I may want to change certain things, and I may change certain things, but until Jesus comes, this world will remain broken and fallen, an imperfect mirror of what could be.
A short trip home, a long convoluted train(s) of thought, a sober reminder to not lose sight of His kingdom in enjoying and celebrating the positive beautiful things of life. In the lift up I sing a new song at the top of my voice to lift the heaviness of my heart.
And then entered home with quiet gratitude, thoughts quelled for now.