Ok, this may result in my total readership from SBC churches going down to one (me!), but here goes:
Without trying to sound trite or blasphemous, I had this recurring meme that kept occuring to me throughout my week earlier this month at Disney World: How is the Magic Kingdom like Christ’s kingdom? Is there a faint echo, a slight shadow in the house of Mouse pointing toward our eternal home?
Yes, I know that God’s presence is what will define heaven more than anything else, but God’s presence will mean that heaven will be some of the following things as well, which Mickey has just a little bit of too:
- Beauty: The Big D really is beautiful, especially the quiet spots in Animal Kingdom. I think all places of natural beauty can make us think of the beauty that awaits us in our eternal home.
- Perfection: O Yes, there’s plenty of things not perfect at Disney World, but they really do try to be fanatical about everything being just so, as much as you can be in a place that has tens of thousands of jostling people spilling through every day. They know that people come to expect having that experience and they try to deliver. Think about what it will be to be eternally in absolute unalterable perfection all around you, to the minutest detail!
- Celebration: what’s Disney without a parade? or without some really bad-for-you caloric consumption? It just wouldn’t be the same! Heaven will be the ultimate celebration, the marriage supper of the Lamb, and it will be a blast!
- Adventure & Wonder: Disney reminds me of Lewis’ description of heaven in The Last Battle, a place of adventure and wonder which will be inexhaustible, eternal and always expanding.
- Community: Now think about this one—isn’t a lot of the fun of Disney seeing the faces of your family and even total strangers smiling? What if you were the only one in the park? I mean, not having any line at Space Mountain would be cool the first dozen times through, but to be alone even in a place like Disney would soon wear thin. It is meant to be enjoyed in community, just like heaven will be so much richer as we enjoy perfect community with all the saints.
- Joy: what’s the end of beauty, perfection, celebration, adventure, & community? It’s joy. And that’s what Disney does in the heart of a child (even a 42 year old one!), and I do think it is a taste, albeit a very small, imperfect one, of the joy that awaits me not many years hence.
So, what do you think? Am I a full-blown heretic, or just plain nuts, or am I seeing here something worth savoring while we wait for eternity?