I saw one of those obnoxious church signs that read, “Honk if you love Jesus, text if you want to meet him.” Now, I understand what the sign is getting at: if you text while driving, you might die. At first this was funny to me, but the more I thought about it, the less funny it became. Think about it. The sign is using something that is wonderful (being with Jesus) and turning it into a crime deterrent (don’t text while driving). In other words, it was saying, “You had better not do this crime, or else you’ll have to go see your heavenly Creator…” Can you imagine what God must thinking? His beloved children are using him to keep themselves from doing stupid and illegal things. “Oh, how God’s heart must weep at the thought that his children do not want to see him.”
Don’t hear me wrongly, I am not approving of texting while driving. Neither am I saying that we should kill ourselves just so we can be with God. What I am saying is, why bring God into this? Why not just say something like, “Texting while driving is reckless and might kill someone.” I know that’s not too catchy, but it at least it’s honest and not self-centered. At least it puts others before yourself. For the sake of your neighbor, please don’t text while driving.
The sign betrays too much about our beliefs, even the default assumptions of Christians: death is loss. True Christianity, in contrast, flies in the face of such atheism. “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain,” says the Apostle Paul (Philippians 1:21). Then he goes on to say, “If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.” (Philippians 1:22-23). Paul actually struggles between living here on earth and living in heaven with God. To the Christian, one is just as real as the other. Actually, to the Christian, to be with Christ is “far better.”
Please don’t hear me being a radical, fundamental, grumpy Christian, who hates life and all forms of comedy (the sign actually is kind of funny). Rather, hear me challenging your worldview. Have we truly grasped the implications of our faith? If we have, then we’ll operate out of the same longings as Paul. We will fully realize that death will actually make us better, happier, and more real, not less. We’ll stop being afraid, stop holding back, and stop being intimidated, for to die is gain, not loss. Upon death, we will cash in, receiving all of longings of our hearts and more joy than we could ever handle. We’ll be in the presence of a God who can’t stop loving us, beautifying us, and serving us (Ephesians 5:25-27).
The farther we drift from the reality of God in heaven, the heavier our hearts will become on earth.
© Samuel Kee, 2012
 This is a paraphrase of a quote that I heard from Tim Keller, I believe.