“Is there a God? Why is He waiting? Don’t you think of it odd when He knows my address? And look at the stars- don’t they remind you of just how feeble we are? Well it used to, I guess.” –John Mayer, “New Deep”
Though it may be difficult to grasp, neither the Wild West (in the past) nor Outer Space (in the future) in fictional entertainment have ever really interested me. In fact, they have actually turned me off from certain franchises. Back to the Future, Part III was a Wild Western, as was American Tail: Fievel Goes West. And though it was before my time and marketed to the opposite gender, before being cancelled, the Saturday morning cartoon Josie and the Pussycats went to Outer Space for their final season. Going into the Wild West or Outer Space both come across as “jump the shark” moments to me. (Star Wars is an exception because it happened a long, long time ago, which is weird to think about.)
Here in the year 2010, the Wild West has been replaced as modern-day Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Dallas have more trouble with violent gangs than they do misbehaving cowboys or Indians. However, no matter what year we survive to, there is still an unseen future- and an unexplored Outer Space will always be something we remain fascinated by. Even if we can shake off the possibility of other life forms out there (see Do Aliens Really Exist?), the scientific fact remains that there is no end to the Universe. Space never stops; it literally can’t. The ultimate great wide open.
A cliché idea is that when you look up at the stars you realize just how small you really are. It’s true. Even right now if I look up at the sky, I think how if only I could see far enough, I would see Outer Space. And part of the whole “you realize how small you really are” doesn’t just account for physical size, but also for our spiritual relation to this Universe.
I am not convinced that Heaven is millions of light years away from us, way out there past Outer Space, like I have always unquestionably assumed. God doesn’t fear that we humans will become so smart and efficient with our space travel programs that we will physically be able to fly to Heaven and therefore force our way in, despite our spiritual condition and relationship with Him.
For all I know, Heaven is actually so physically close we could throw a rock to it. But our inability to see the spiritual realm prevents us from seeing it now. Even when it somehow becomes easy to forget the relevance of God and eternity and how everything really is spiritual, Heaven isn’t that far away. We definitely don’t have to travel past the blue skies into Outer Space to find the place.
And one more thing… Now that you’ve read my take on outer space, why not read my perspective on being a dad? That’s right- parenting from a dad’s point of view. I have been documenting my thoughts as a dad since the week we found out my wife was pregnant. I formally invite you now to read my “dad blog” by clicking on the link below: