A few days ago, I had the pleasure of having one of our granddaughters with me for a day. Her name is Jasiman and she is 8 years old and full of energy, lots of energy. Sometimes misdirected energy but in spite of that, she is a lot of fun to be around. Having been ADD before ADD was cool, I almost understand her sometimes. She spent the day with me at CompuPlus, where I try to help people with their computer problems by helping Mark with his store. I don’t claim to be a computer expert and what I can’t handle, Mark comes in later and takes over.
Jasiman brought with her a sack full of coloring books and other children paraphernalia to help keep her occupied. This worked for a while and she was content to amuse herself, but she eventually did get around to the what, when, where, why and how come questions that kids always ask. And that’s ok, kids have to learn somehow.
Mark is working in Morristown and sometimes during the day, he will have to get something from a computer here in Rogersville. He uses an on line service to access his computers. He logs in and is using the computer remotely. This isn’t that big a deal unless you have an eight year old spending time with a guy who likes to have fun. I told Mark to keep working the computer, called Jasiman over and “helped” her to see that the mouse was moving and the computer seemed to be working by itself. Her eyes got big and she didn’t really know what to think. Being October, I suggested that it was a haunted computer. Then, as if on cue, Mark opened up Microsoft Word and began to type a note to Jasiman.
You should have seen her eyes as this computer wrote her a message and even used her name. After a few moments, she started to try to figure out how I did that. She’s a little suspicious of me because of other pranks that she thinks I had a hand in making happen. I wish I had video taped this but it all happened so quickly that I didn’t even think of doing that. It was one of those times that is forever frozen in my mind, but not captured for all to see.
God works in really strange ways sometimes though. That little joke gave me an opportunity to share with Jasiman that I believe in God and that my belief in God doesn’t allow for haunted computers. We had a short talk about ghosts and stuff like that and I explained that while those stories could be fun and sometimes it’s fun to get scared, our belief in Jesus doesn’t include a belief in ghosts. Except for the Holy Ghost of course. I simply cannot believe that someone could get caught between worlds and end up haunting places, people and things.
In Luke 16:19-31, we get a glimpse of two people who died. One was a poor man named Lazarus and the other we know only as a rich man. It tells us of the differences in the way that the rich man lived and the poor man lived. The rich man was dressed in purple and fine linen and he would feast lavishly every day. The poor man would long to be filled from the pieces of food that fell from the rich mans table. But instead the dogs would come and lick his sores. It says that the poor man was left at the gate of the rich man, letting me know that he had to pass by Lazarus to come and go from his lavish house.
Then the scriptures tell us about the day that both men died. Notice the difference in the description of these two men. When Lazarus died, we are told the angels carried him into the arms or side of Abraham. Then all that is said about the rich man is that he died and was buried. For me that has always been a big part of these verses. It highlights the difference in the two men’s death as much as day and night, darkness and light. Then we go on to read the rich man was in torment.
So we have one in paradise with Abraham, and one in torment. Notice that we aren’t told that Lazarus could see the rich man, but the rich man could see Lazarus. Maybe that’s part of the torment. Seeing what his lifestyle and decisions have kept him from enjoying and having to experience the torment. But for this particular post, notice that neither one had the option of coming back to earth. You find this all through scripture. When we die, there’s only two places we can go.
Jesus and two others died on Calvary. One cried out to Jesus to remember him when he came into his kingdom. The other one did not. Jesus answered the one who cried out “today you will be with me in paradise.” He said nothing to the other one. Notice how this parallels the rich man and Lazarus. Two people, two destinations. Nothing in between and nowhere else to go.
That’s why I don’t and can’t believe in things, places or people being haunted. At least by other people who have died. But like the rich man, we can be haunted by our decisions.
If you were to die today, where would you spend eternity? Heaven or Hell. It’s your choice.