My brother in law passed along this incredible few words on the reality of Steve Jobs passing. I loved it. I have heard/read so many pithy, quick witted, "Steve Jobs was successful on earth but not in Heaven"-type twitter posts that I kind of had to surpress my gag reflex. Christians, are we that calloused that we comment on someone's eternity in 160 words or less? I don't know Ryan Bricker, but I'm thankful for his words.
From: Ryan firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: October 6, 2011 11:16:44 AM CDT
'There not an Ap for that'
I feel compelled to share some thoughts in light of Steve Jobs passing. Thoughts that may be very hard for us to accept and to proclaim to a lost world. Without question, I can offer up my utmost respect and dignified remorse to Steve’s family, his friends and his fans for their loss. And all of them are fully deserved of their own loss and grief. And while I fully understand the need to reflect on all his accomplishments and his undeniable success, even still I have been utterly blown away by the responses I have seen and read in the media.
But it’s at this very moment in time at this unique juxtaposition of life, death, wealth and success that we can see all that Solomon spoke of in Ecclesiastics, ”….meaningless..meaningless “
The morning news shows are filled with stories of how he “changed the world!”, and “changed our lives” and interviews with Apple executives and devoted followers leaving flower shrines at Apple stores and how their lives we ever changed by Apple. Facebook and Twitter posts are going rampant on with adorations, and condolences at the world’s great loss.
All of Apple’s influence and accomplishments is last week’s news. Today’s news is about coming to the end of your life. And if there is anything to see here, it’s that 7 billion dollars can’t save your life or even sustain your life for one more day. It’s that technology will not save us, and that all our empires mean nothing when we leave the earth. Eventually, all the ipods and all the Macs in the world (even mine) will return back to the silicon from which they came.
The continual notion that He or apple has “changed our lives”, should make us ask ourselves, “What is life about?”. Apple is not life (ironically is brought death in the Garden), the things of this world are not life. Jesus alone came that we would have life and have it to the fullest. And even so you and I and the world fill our lives over and over again with more and more crap hoping that this trip to the well will be the last.
All the “i-world” has exposed is our ever quenching thirst for “ i ”, (ourselves) to be entertained and to be distracted. For us, life is found in our entertainment, in any way we can fill the silence and interrupt any stillness that may cause us to “really feel” or “really hear”.
I’ve watched people camp out for weeks in the heat of a Texas summer to be the first in line to get a new version of a phone they already have, and that will be available to everyone that same day. It looks like Zaccaeus climbing up a tree, or friends of a leper on the roof lowering their friend down to get the new Ipad at times in these stores. The same zeal for the search of life, but that well will not bring life, you’ll need to keep going back to draw water. (by design). If your life has been changed by instant access to your entire music collection, or a computer that fits in your purse or by Angry Birds, then where was your life to begin with?
I will never forget the time I was at the Grand Canyon watching an amazing sunset. I couldn’t help but to notice one girl amongst the entire crowd. Hers was the only head not peering out into the vast canyon. No hers was bowed down deep into her lap doing something else, something very intently. And then she shrugged to the side, seemingly annoyed by everyone else in the isles and I could see what it was that she was so reverently connected to, a Nintendo gameboy. I sat in amazement as the sun was setting and noticed she had never lifted her head, not even for a moment. Never did she even glance at one of the most beautiful places on earth. Eventually the crowd at the canyon’s edge were too distracting, so she actually turned her back to the canyon and the crowd, perhaps to get a better shadow and contrast on her 3 inch game screen. And as sad as I became to see a generation that seemed so lost that they could not disconnect for one moment of man-made entertainment, I was even sadder to think that they could not even recognize anything that wasn’t.
So when I reflect on Steve Jobs I ask the question that Jesus asked.
“What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” – Jesus
I did not know Steve nor do I know what his last moments entailed (I am not his judge), but by all accounts he was an eastern religion spiritualist or Buddhist. At the moment of our death nothing done in our life will matter, no greatness we leave behind will mean anything. We will be face to face with the God of the universe who will look for our name in the book of life written in blood red ink from Jesus alone, the author of life.
There’s not an ‘Ap’ for that.
Glory to the King of Kings alone!
-Ryan (Even so I would like an Ipad for Christmas)