Monday, January 4, 2010

Thinking about a death.

So the other night I was sitting by the side of the road in Westville comforting a mom who's son had just died after a skate boarding accident. The guys name was Oli (actually Oliver). He has lots of nicknames because he was a big part of the community of Westville Baptist and when you love people as much as he did then they often love you back and they give you cool nicknames. My best nickname for him was Oli the After. It refers to him after God really got hold of him and helped him get clean from drugs and other really bad stuff in his life. (He gets a whole chapter in a book by my friend Theran - its about baptism in the holy spirit - the chapter not the book, it isn't published yet but i hope it will be soon.) Any way back to the main story.

I sat with his mom and some other friends on one side of the road and we cried and prayed and sang worship songs, I looked across at the other side of the road where his body lay covered with one of those silver blanket things and thought about Oli and about death. I had lots of thoughts but I must say that I didn't once wonder what Oli's theology had been. Not even what his position was on any of the really BIG issues that people like to condemn each other over or pronounce others as heretics over. I honestly don't know what his position was on the inerency of scripture, or his opinion of woman in ministry or homoxeculity or atonement theory. I didn't even think about one of those things. What I did think about was this.....

That Oli really, really, really loved Jesus. That he spent LOTS of time praying. He was out there on the road because be had made friends with some pretty wild kids and he was skating with them and sharing Jesus. That God really changed Oli and everyone could see it.

We get so worked up about theology but when somone dies you don't think about their theology you think about RELATIONSHIPS.

Thats why I like being more postmodern than modern because relationship is a big thing, and I think relationship is a big thing to God as well.


  1. it's so hard when children die. Throws me right out of the box.. Glad you were with her.

  2. John glad that you were able to be with Oli's mom. Can't think of a better person. Great thoughts on relationships. Definately more important than right theology. I am sure that Oli's mom would agree.

  3. Hey Niel I'm oli,s mom and you are right. Oli loved Jesus with all his heart and soul and mind and John loves me and oli and his sister and brother beyond measure just like Jesus loves us.