Since then, I have spent quite a bit of my time, reading about Mr. Steven Paul Jobs. Even today, a week after his passing, I still can’t resist a news article that analyses and praises his deep passion for technology, his prescience in uncovering the deep needs of human nature, his sense of aesthetics etc… It was today that I wondered, why I do not get tired of Steve Jobs? Is it just curiosity? Of course, I am a ‘curious cat’. But even when I read things about him which do not add to my knowledge-base and consequently cannot satisfy my curiosity, I still happily read on. Why?, probably because I admire him.
The Christian reads the Bible for similar reasons. We don’t just read the Bible because it satisfies our curiosity (which it does by the way, at multiple levels), but because it is about someone who is to be admired – the One Sovereign God who is the most beautiful person ever. There are times when I have said in some Bible Study groups, “God is the most beautiful person ever”, and have gotten the Dude-you-are-weird looks from others. I don’t care that I look weird, not just because I know I am weird (everyone is weird to some extent, some more than others. God creates diversity. :P), but because I know when it comes to matters of admiring the Lord’s beauty, I am in good company .
Psalm 27:4 This only have I asked of the Lord, that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.
It behoves me to note that this sort of seeking to gaze on the Lord’s beauty is not easy for fallen men, which is why in the first part of the verse, David pleads with the Lord to make it possible for him to only seek after the Lord… ‘This only have I asked of the Lord, that I will seek after’
David’s reference to ‘House of the Lord’ and ‘His Temple’ refers to life in Heaven as well. Imagine living forever and ever doing nothing but gazing on the Lord and inquiring to know more about Him. Would it be boring after a few days? Heavens, NO! Why? Because the Lord is the most beautiful person ever. He is worthy of all admiration. If a finite man by the name Steve Jobs can inspire me to spend so much time reading about him, how much more can an Infinite God inspire me to spend an Eternity trying to know him more and more and more and more and more… and a thousand, thousand time more!!!
When a Christian reads the Bible and get on his knees to pray, he is just having a foretaste of that Eternal pleasure of getting to know Him, which is what makes the ‘Quite Time’ the most exciting time of the day. To call the time spent reading the Bible and Praying as ‘Quite Time’ is I think, a terrible misnomer. I would rather call it ‘Pleasure Time’ or ‘Delight Time’ or ‘Exciting Time’ or ‘Gazing on the Lord Time’ for that is what it is.
When we read the Bible and Pray we don’t get get into some laconic, dull, comatose state. Rather, ‘kindled’ by the Holy Spirit, we get to do the thing we most enjoy to do – admire the Lord. We get excited – like a jock watching his favourite star play Football – like a nerd reading the Lord of the Rings – like a non-philistine listening to Beethoven’s 5th.
Christians are excited to gaze upon the Lord and this is one thing they’ll do it in this life and continue doing to a greater extent of pleasure and contentment in the NEXT one too. Steve Jobs did so much towards making this life meaningful and exciting. He famously said, “life is short, don’t live someone else’s”. But honestly, I wonder how much thought he put into the flip side of that exhortation – finding excitement and meaning in the NEXT life after this short one! If Jobs doesn’t find his NEXT life exciting and meaningful, this may be the first time his much admired prescience to anticipate future needs and improvise upon it from the present, has let him down. But then death stumps even the Strong!!!
Ps: ‘NExT’, by the way, is the name of the company Jobs founded after he was originally dumped by Apple. NExT was spectacularly idealistic. It was true to ALL of Jobs’ perfectionist visionary ideals of creating the NEXT revolution in computers. It made great products, but wasn’t that successful. NExT was bought by Apple and its OS became the core to Apple’s successful OS X. But the biggest asset that Apple got with the NExT acquisition was the legend Steve Jobs… Reverting back to the point of this post, having an unbiblical perspective of life makes even the longsighted, short-sighted, the strong, weak and the brilliant, foolish. Steve Jobs famously said in a 1985 interview, “I don’t care much about what is right or wrong. I care for success”. At the end of the day, when all is said and done, I guess success doesn’t matter as much as wisdom from the Lord!