Joshua Papsdorf shares with us a moment with his children playing a board game together. There was nothing particularly special about the evening, besides familial bonding, but the experience led him to a rather existential thought:
Those sorts of times are supposed to be what it’s all about, right? But, looking back now, did it really matter? Neither of them will probably recall the evening later in life. And, even if they do, they may end up remembering my grumpiness and exasperation more than the joys. The life of the average parent is made up almost entirely of those sorts of moments. Is such a life meaningful? Why play a game they won’t remember? Why teach a lesson they’ll forget? As a Christian, I can hope for heaven someday, but do the details of life between now and then really matter?
To illustrate this thought, he turns to the scene from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off where Cameron focuses very closely on Seurat’s “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.” As he looks closer, Cameron realizes that the masterpiece is composed of little dots that are meaningless when not viewed as a whole.
Joshua realizes that these little moments, however flawed with the problems that tend to arise in competitive children, are all part of God’s masterpiece of his and his children’s lives. He could have, however, missed this realization entirely, since as we all know:
Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.
What do you think?
It is fitting that Papsdorf used Ferris Bueller’s Day Off to illustrate an existential idea, since the acclaimed movie has led to one of the most interesting fan theories out there. If you don’t know it, it claims that Ferris Bueller was not a real person, but rather a figment of Cameron’s neglected teenage psyche.