As I was downloading some number of Christian e-books to read and study, I somehow felt intimidated by the number of the books – and for sure the number of pages I’m going to study. I was having my break, trying to figure when will be the best time to read all these books – will it be on my lunch time, in my commuting time, after work, in the morning? How on the earth I would have enough time to digest all these great author’s thoughts, thousand pages of all of them in difficult terms and theory, while I stay as I am – Dea, the infamous slow-reader & slow-learner?
I was pondering about this time-management issue, when I came to feel amazed – how human brain is indeed a powerful instrument God has given to us! I mean, by reading, you can know a lot of things! Reading other’s works can make you have more knowledge, and how much more the power of brain of they who wrote those books! How does it feel to be Augustine of Hippo, or Calvin, or whoever their names, pouring out their theories in the books, when only the thought of reading their books can make me feel overwhelmed.
Err, sorry, of course it’s not spectacular news. But I really loathe reading serious things, and I’ve tried to avoid them as much as I could – thanks to my laziness and ‘please don’t ask me to think too much’ attitude. I guess I didn’t realize I’ve lost the chance to learn a lot of things because of that. In simple words, I’ve made myself dull by wasting my time.
Now, thinking that I have to catch up my lateness of learning by studying a lot, I wonder how long it will take to finish those books, and how old I would be by the time I finish them. Will I finish it before I die? Will I finish it when I’m 50 years old? 60? 42? Will I have enough time to practice my knowledge? Will I have the time to pass them on to others? Or that knowledge will be only mine, by the time I must meet my Creator.
The thought of reading the books and my anxiety of it, reminds me that I haven’t even finished reading my Bible. Oh my God… I still have a lot of books left! If I have to read the Bible thoroughly (and as a Christian, shouldn’t I do it at least ONCE?), will there still be a time left to study other thing? What if I died before I finish everything? The knowledge of these great men will be wasted by me.
And so I wonder, will we be able to read in Heaven? If the absent of reading books written by great mortal men can be excused – since we’ll meet the Great Author Himself anyway, so at least those limited doctrines and theories would be all cleared once we meet the Truth Himself… but what about the Bible? What should I say to God if I met Him and I haven’t finished reading His Book? It would be like meeting Agatha Christie and said, “Wow I’m so happy I finally meet you in person! I’m the greatest fan of yours and I’ve read (some) of your books!” – but then you found it really awkward to tell her who was the killer in Ten Little Negroes, or in which episode the great Hercule Poirot spent his last breath. Wouldn’t it be shameful?
Panicky, I consulted Mr. Google for this and typed: Will I be able to read in Heaven? The questions came out in my screen: Will we recognize each other in Heaven? What does Bible say about Heaven? What will we do in Heaven? Whom will I see in Heaven? Who gets to go to Heaven? What will Heaven be like?
So far nobody asked (in Google) about whether we can read the Bible in Heaven or not…
And how much this question shakes me! If I didn’t get to finish reading my Bible when I’m alive – and reading (even reading the Bible) is not one of In-Heaven-Activities-List, it means, I would enter it and meet my Judge before I fully comprehend His Words! It would be like going to a final exam and haven’t finished reading the chapters – there’s a fat chance you’ll fail, or maybe you didn’t but you wouldn’t get the straight A.
Are you saying if I don’t finish reading the Bible I won’t get to go to Heaven?
Oh, no, no, no. Don’t get me wrong! Of course I didn’t say that! We are saved in His grace – not by our deed, that’s for sure.
I’m just trying to picture it with my limited mind – the shame will be like calling myself a fanatic fan who knew little about the Rock Star. The hurt I will cause Him will be like telling my loved-one, “Honey, of course I’m so in lovvvvvvvveeeee with you!! Yo must trust me! Oh, the love letters you send me every week? Uhm, you know, I really have A LOT of things to do, remember Anita invited me to her birthday? Or when I had a marathon meetings last week? Ehm, ya sure once I’m not busy I will read what you wrote me, I’ve told you I love you so much, haven’t I?”
It’s not that I don’t know how to read. It’s not that I don’t have the Bible or it’s too expensive for me (I’ve got two hardcopies with me in my room, sigh). It’s not that I don’t like the subject. It’s not that I’m very busy (I managed to read some novels & comics from time to time). It’s not that the Bible is too complicated to understand for my little mind.
Perhaps it’s just because I’m too lazy – just like I’m too lazy to read complicated books by John Calvin and chose Gosho Aoyama instead. Or worse, perhaps it’s because I don’t really love You? Will I find the time to read what You wrote me?
Do I really love You?