David Byrne once wrote “Heaven is a place where nothing ever happens. … It’s hard to imagine that nothing at all could be so exciting, could be so much fun.” And I have to agree, “that nothing at all could be so exciting” is pretty much beyond my ability to imagine. I could take the cop out and say that maybe we should just substitute, say, the word “fulfilling” for “exciting” but that glosses over the real issue, the real issue is that we like excitement and the perfection that we try to claim for Heaven is inherently lacking in excitement.
So I asked God to give me something more to go on, how can Heaven represent perfection without giving up the excitement? He told me to think of the universe as a whole as a writing exercise. See, I understand writing so this is a metaphor I can work with, and God knows that. So God and I talked for a bit and here’s my view for the moment:
The universe is like a great big novel, it’s full of all sorts of things happening, some of them because they move the plot along, some of them because they add color and flavor, and some of them are even there to provide misdirection, to keep us guessing about the ending until it’s revealed.
But the universe is just the first draft.
God is working as fast as he can, getting the universe down on paper, so to speak. When he gets the time he goes back and does rewrites. Some things he can fix as he goes along, that’s part of what evolution is about… The dinosaurs weren’t interesting enough? What if we bring in a big asteroid and give the mammals a chance to move to center stage? But some things you can’t just write around, some things you have to go back and change the way they happened in the first place, in order to make everything fit, in order to make everything work its way to a satisfying conclusion.
Heaven is the final draft. Heaven is where everything happens for a reason. Heaven is where we abandon our free will to better serve the greater good.
And if you’re not willing to do that, maybe Heaven isn’t the right place for you. But if that’s the case, well, you can still raise Hell, while you’re here on Earth.