Now, if you don't watch LOST, and don't have any idea about what happened in that world...well...I'm sorry for you. The past six years have been a wild ride for those of us who immersed themselves in the show. I actually had to stop watching because of how much time I devoted to watching and reading about the show and all of it's intricacies! I caught up this season, though, so I could watch the finale with the rest of the world. I'm not going to explain the whole show, but I do need to explain the final reveal in order to share my thoughts with you.
One of the great things about LOST was the way in which they told the story. The basic timeline of the story is intermingled with scenes from one of the character's lives from a different point in their life. At the start of the show we had flashbacks, which was an awesome way to reveal character backgrounds. Then we had flashforwards, which showed us that some characters DID indeed make it off the island, and the two finally intersected. Then there was some time travel, which was hard for me to follow, since that was during my "break" from LOST. And this final season was what the world called "flashsideways" which depicted how the character's lives could have been if they had never crash landed on the island. Most of this season's discussion has been about how the two timelines would converge and which one would be real.
Well, as it turns out the flashsideways timeline was actually the afterlife. A place that they created to reconnect before crossing over into the true afterlife together. Each person had to remember their life and death before being able to cross over. And after that reveal, a couple of key things struck me. Now I'm sure these are not the messages that the writers intended, but it's what I've been thinking about anyways.
Charlie- "None of this matters." The first person to start seeing the flasbacks saw them as so real and so much more than what his current life was. This phrase is repeated by Desmond before jumping into the light cave. Because of these thoughts Charlie drinks himself into a stupor, and Desmond does something extremely dangerous. There was no value given to the life they were living.
Life as a Christian looks forward to the hope that is in heaven. Consider these words written by Paul "For to me, living is for Christ, and dying is even better." (Phil 1:21) That expresses not necessarily the meaninglessness of this much so much as how great heaven is. There is no fear in death. Charlie destroyed himself from the inside out because he saw that the things he had been valuing were meaningless.
Jack- "It's all real and it all matters." (or something like that) He says this as Desmond is preparing to jump in the light cave. He has found a meaning and a purpose to his life.
I'm still not exactly sure what Jack became when he drank that stuff. But he had been searching for meaning. He had been searching for value. I HAVE IT! I have meaning and value in Christ! My relationship with Christ is one thing that will be taken with me to heaven. A wise man once said, "Here is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is the duty of every person." (Ecc 12:13) It's true that this life doesn't matter given the all-surpassing glory of what's to come. But what's also true is that there is value in the living of my life and the knowing of my God.
Jin and Sun- "We are safe" How much at peace were they once they remembered! When Sawyer came in and said he was there to protect them, Sun just smiled. They had no fears of a murderer coming after them- what could he do to them?!?
This is exactly as I should be living "If God is for us, who can be against us?" (Rom 8:31b) I have the eternal hope that is found in Christ Jesus. What matters is what God thinks of me. What matters is that God is taking care of me. What matters is that God and I are on the same side and nothing can stand against Him. If I believe this, then I should have no fears, anxieties, or worries in this life.
Desmond- "I have to show them something." Desmond was the first to come to a full realization of where he was and what was happening. It became his goal to show his friends the truth. He didn't want to "leave" without them. He risked everything in order to do this. He used everything to his advantage because he was aware of the truth. He used his money to make it happen. He even had himself imprisoned to make it happen. His mission was clear and that was all that mattered.
As a Christian, I know the truth. Jesus Christ lived, died, and rose again. He took the punishment for my sin. He did this so I could enter into a relationship with the Father. Eternal life in all it's glory awaits me. Fine and dandy. But that's not all. It becomes my RESPONSIBILITY to share it with the people I'm close to. In fact, Jesus told me to, as well: "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations..." (Matt 28:18) Expending my time and energy towards this goal is what Jesus is asking of me.
At first I got stuck on the "None of this matters" part. Most of my life is spent doing things that don't seem to matter- washing dishes, folding laundry, bathing children, vacuuming, etc. Even the things I do for various ministries were not stacking up under the weight of this thought. But my wise husband shared with me that God thinks they have value because he created us to do them. If God asks me to wipe a runny nose or make dinner, there is value in that. "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." (1 Cor 10:31) The mundane tasks of daily life are given meaning. My relationships with others have eternal value. I have absolutely nothing to fear. And I have something to show you.