At first it was cute – all these adorable little movies about zombies and an apocalyptic end to the world that kept coming out. I know that I speak for all of us when I say how deeply inspired I have been by the endless stream of gruesome and hopeless images of world destruction that have flowed across my consciousness over the last decade. It’s like remembering my first kiss…ah, my first apocalyptic movie. A warm feeling that sends shivers down my back. When I witnessed the destruction of humanity, my spirit soared in exultation!
From 2000-2009 (the reliable Wikipedia informs me) there were 55 apocalyptic films released by major film companies. That’s an average 5.5 per year, or more than one per season of the year. This list doesn’t include books, short stories, TV shows, video-games, card games, or art pieces.
Take a moment, close your eyes, and dream about the state that the earth (including humanity) will be in 75 years from today.
Without wanting to be too presumptuous, I’m guessing that your vision wasn’t very pretty. Did it include high levels of pollution, low levels of human cooperation, and a large dose of animal (including human) destruction?
I love to dream. I always have. I like to think about the future, and when I think about my own future, it’s easy for me to think of it as a “bright” one.
But I’ve been affected by the zombie movies. They are catching up to me. My dreams have been infused by a million images of immanent doom, despair, and flesh eating stupid, infected, cannibalistic monsters.
In the early twentieth century, roughly a hundred years ago, when someone looked into the future they saw a space age. They saw fantastical creations of science. They saw space conquered and explored. Their dreams were pretty creative.
When we look into the future we see destruction. We witness the coming of anti-creation. And our dreams are anti-creative. Zombies. Really? That’s all we’ve got?
Handsome blogger – “Twentieth century person, what will the future be like?”
20th Century Person – “Well, we’ll colonize Mars and conquer cancer.”
Handsome blogger – “Twenty-first century person, what will the future be like?”
21st Century Person – “Well, there will be zombies.”
Really? Zombies? COME ON!
That’s what our artists, our thinkers, our dreamers, our story tellers “dream” about?
I challenge you, dreamer, to dream up something better than that. Something richer. Something glorious! I challenge you to imagine a world you want your children to live in.
This is how God dreams. “Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.”
This is from the last chapter of the entire Bible. This is the dream that we are left with. Sounds a lot like zombies.
I’m not challenging us to dream with the belief that humanity is good. Humanity is fallen. But, you can still dream redemptively in the midst of a broken world.
Zombie dreams are dreams of entropy. But I’m not sure creation can entropy (it certainly suffers and groans under the curse)…Let me hash this thought out a little further.
I’m of the belief that all of creation is from and held together by God. I literally believe that air is breathable, because God wills it to be so. If He were to “turn away” from creation, even for a moment, all would cease to be “held together” and would cease to exist at all. Existence itself is only in and through and by God. [Author’s note – That’s not to say I don’t believe in entropy at all. Certainly human creation can, and does entropy – governments, schools, neighborhood parks, etc.]
So, if God were to remove Himself from creation, it wouldn’t entropy into chaos, it would cease to exist totally. It would be not. Without I AM there is no we are because He is I AM.
Satan is the god of entropy. And he would bring chaos even into our dreams.
Where we dream of a future, of hope, of a prosperous home, Lucifer would have us “dream” of nuclear fallout.
When you are robbed of your dreams, you are robbed of your future. When you are robbed of your future you dread the future. When you dread the future you hate your life. When you hate your life, you hate your kids’ life. When you hate your kids’ life, you embrace doomsday as a long lost friend.
“I’ve got an idea, let’s build tunnels deep in the ground and stock them with cans of green-beans, then let’s live out some sick, self-fulfilling prophecies about the end of civilization! Our forefathers would be so proud. Our children will thank us.”
Zombies. God love ’em. What a future.
When I think about the future, when I recklessly fling hope towards what might be, I imagine reconciliation. Creation reconciled. Streams could run clear again (“water of life, bright as crystal”). Maybe we’ll learn how to speak to animals. Or teach them how to speak. That would be cool. Maybe my daughter will help stem the tide of the destruction of the ocean reef. Maybe my son will bring justice with him to a powerful government position.
Because of zombies. That’s why.
I don’t want zombies for my kids! I want life, and life abundant! I want freedom, I want hope, I want reconciliation!
You can keep your zombies, or if you’d like, send them to hell.