IS YOUR RECORD CLEAR?
In that place between wakefulness and sleep, I found myself in a room. There were no distinguishing features, just the wall covered with small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list the titles of all the books stored there, in alphabetical order, by author and subject. These stacks of files stretched from wall to wall, and from floor to ceiling. They seemed endless. As I drew near, I could see that each file had different headings.
The first to catch my attention was one titled, “Girls I have
liked.” I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it–shocked by the realization that I knew those names listed there.
Then, without being told, I knew exactly where I was. This
lifeless room, with its endless files, was a crude catalog room of my life. Here were written detailed descriptions of every action and thought which had occurred throughout my life–details I could not even remember, with an accuracy I could never hope to match.
A strange sense of wonder and curiosity overcame me and I began to randomly open some of the file drawers and explore the contents. Some brought pure joy to me and tears to my eyes, while others brought shock and horror, and a sense of regret that was overwhelming. The feelings were so intense, I found myself looking over my shoulder to see if anyone could see me reading.
A file named “Friends” was next to one marked “Friends I Have Betrayed.” The titles ranged from the mundane to the weird and baffling. “Books I Have Read”; “Lies I Have Told”; “Comfort I Have Given”; “Jokes I Have Laughed At”; “People I Have Laughed At”; “People I Have Laughed With”; and on and on.
Some were hilarious, others painful in their detail–“Things I
Muttered Under My Breath.” Some files contained more cards than I expected, others contained less. I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information about the life I had lived. When I pulled out the drawers marked “Songs I Have Listened To” and “Movies I Have Watched”, it was amazing how tightly packed the cards were. The impact of how much time these files represented hit me. Oh!–the endless hours spent
in useless entertainment of my body and mind, yet neglect of my soul!
When I came to the file named “Lustful Thoughts”, a chill ran
through my body. I pulled the file out only an inch, not willing to test its size, and drew out a card. I shuddered at the contents and got sick to my stomach when I thought of how much detail had been recorded.
An almost animal rage broke loose in me. One thought dominated my mind: “No one must see these files or read these cards. No one must ever see this room. I have to destroy it!” In an insane frenzy, I railed against the file drawers. I yanked the drawers out and, intent upon destroying every one, started trying to dislodge them, but they would not budge. I threw them on the floor and started pounding on them. The cards that I could pull out, I tried to tear, but found them
tougher than leather, and stronger than steel.
Defeated and utterly helpless, I returned the files to their
slots. Leaning my forehead against the wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh. Then I saw it! The title read, “People I Have Shared The Gospel With.” The handle was brighter than the others around it, as if it hadn’t been used very much. I opened the drawer and only a few cards fell out into my hands.
The tears came. I began to weep huge sobs so deep that my stomach hurt and it thrust throughout my body. I shook and fell onto my knees and cried out in pain. The rows of files swirled around in my tear-filled eyes. “No one must ever know,” I sobbed. “I must lock this room and hide the key.”
But as I pushed aside the tears, I saw HIM. “No, not Him,” I
cried. “I don’t want Him to see what’s in these files. Anyone but Jesus!” I looked, helplessly, as He opened each of the drawers and started to read. It seemed He read each one so quickly. How could He have read them so fast?
Finally He turned and looked at me–with a look of pain that was so deep and sorrowful, it broke my heart. I could see the pity in His eyes. He came over and put His arms around me. I dropped my head and covered my face. I couldn’t look into His eyes. I could tell that He was weeping with me. It must have hurt Him as much as it did me.
Then He got up and walked over to the files. He removed each one of them, and where my name had been written, He replaced it with His!
“No!”, I shouted, rushing to Him. All I could think to say was
‘No! No! No!” I pulled a card from Him. There, where my name had been, was His name–written in red so rich that I knew it was His blood which He had shed before for me. He gently took the card back and continued to sign them. When He had signed the last one, He walked back to me and
placed His hand on my shoulder. With a voice so low and impassioned He said: “It is finished.”
I stood up and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on the door, as there were still cards to be filed.