Is your life a comedy or a tragedy? When Harold Crick (Will Ferrell) hears the narrator of his life while brushing his teeth, he panics with the realization that his fate may not be his own. What ensues is a fascinating character study of a tax collector looking at his life – his time, his talents, his relationships, and his very certain future – death! Harold’s fears… of death, and more specifically of someone else controlling his fate, crosses time, place, context and culture… it’s the fears many of us spend the bulk of our day trying to distract ourselves from.
“…it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment”
– Hebrews 19:27
When will we die? How will we die? What if it is fated? If so, is that fate impersonal? What if it’s not? What if our death – and life – is determined by someone? Hopefully it’s not a neurotic, chain-smoking nitwit that looks like Emma Thompson… but more to the point: do we truly fear death, or simply a death without meaning? This really hinges on whether or not we trust the Storyteller.
“Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there were none of them.”
– Psalm 139:16
I had the pleasure of presenting the theological implications of the film Stranger Than Fiction at Mars Hill Church’s Shoreline Campus. If you haven’t seen the film, the audio presentation contains plot spoilers! You’ve been warned. Then again, Harold Crick thought he knew the end of the story…