I watched an episode of “The Walking Dead” a couple weeks ago at the suggestion of a friend. “The Walking Dead” is a story centered on a handful of humans trying to survive in a world that has succumb to a disease that turns people into zombies.
It’s graphic. It’s gory. And, strangely for me, it was very sad.
Half of me was horrified of the zombies. Their decayed bodies, their thirst for living flesh, their pack mentality. The fear that once you are bit, you will become one of them.
Yet there was a part of me that felt sympathy for them. They had no say in becoming zombies. Mothers, wives, children, brothers, husbands. They were people who once had lives. Now they were reduced to shambling undead whose only impulse was to prey upon the living. Chained to a horrifying existence.
I can’t tell you how many times I have read this verse: “And you were dead in your trespasses and sins…” Ephesians 2:1 NASB (emphasis mine). But actually seeing the undead on this show made me realize just how bad off we are. We are zombies. We are walking around, talking, eating, breathing, living. And yet we are dead. Corpses. Living and dead at the same time. Shuffling around, searching for life, with no clue how destitute we are.
“The Walking Dead” made me see God’s Word in a whole new way.
Maybe I’m just weird, but I see God’s truth in speculative stories all the time.
A couple years ago I was reading a Star Wars series. While reading about Luke and his interaction with the force, I thought, “That is how the Holy Spirit is in my life!”
Now don’t get me wrong: I believe the Holy Spirit is the third person in the triune God and not just some spiritual force. And the Force is generally a neutral power in the lives of the Jedi.
But in this particular story, the way the force guided Luke, comforted him, strengthened him, and counseled him was exactly how the Holy Spirit works in a believer’s life.
A Star Wars story showed me a glimpse of how God works in our lives.
Or take the Matrix. The human race is enslaved to a computer program and deceived into believing the world they live in is real. A handful of humans have broken free and are working toward the freedom of all mankind. But in order to be free, a person must make the decision for him or herself. Choose between the pills. Red or blue. Stay in the system or be free.
The irony is that the fake world generated by the computer seems so much more beautiful and enticing than the real world. In the fake world you are attractive, with stylish clothes and delicious food. But the reality is your life is being sucked from you. You are a slave and don’t even know it.
I also find it interesting that those who are outside the system are desperately trying to free their fellow man. They could turn around and head to Zion and leave the human race where it is. But they don’t.
And their lives are not very appealing. They live on a dirty ship, constantly on the run, wearing drab clothing and eating tasteless mush. Yet they won’t give up on mankind. They will keep trying to free the human race with their last breath.
Same with us. Our world is enslaved to sin. But our world doesn’t know it. All it sees is wealth and beauty and power. However, none of it is real. It is simply an illusion that keeps people enslaved to sin, which eventually leads to death.
Like those people who are free of the computer, the Christian life is not a glorious life. It is one of serving, pain, and giving up what we want now to gain something so much better later. But it is worth it if we are able to help others find freedom in this life.
So how about you? Have you ever read a book or watched a movie and suddenly seen God or a passage from the Bible in a whole new way? Share with us the story and what you discovered about God.
Morgan L. Busse writes speculative fiction for the adult market. She is the author of Daughter of Light and Son of Truth, the first two books the Follower of the Word series. Morgan lives in the Midwest with her husband and four children. You can find out more about Morgan at her blog, Facebook, or Twitter (@MorganLBusse)
*This article was originally featured at Speculative Faith.