On the Passing of Things, as Seen in a Commercial

The commercial below must have taken weeks to film. Regardless of its intent (selling homeowner’s insurance), there is something of an admonition in both the video and the accompanying music: life and the things of life slip away. Not a bad theme in November, when the Church bids us to meditate on the last things.

The lyrics of the background music set forth the theme: “Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow. Don’t stop; it’ll soon be here.” As the song plays, the objects in the house start to get up and leave the house and its owners. Then, the occupants themselves begin to be swept out. By the end of the commercial, all that was within and all who were within have been swept outside.

This is a paradigm for life. No thing and no person in this world will survive the passage of time. All will be swept away; all will pass, down the river of time. Even lofty mountains were once on the sea floor—and to that floor they will eventually erode and return. Jesus says, Heaven and Earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away (Mat 24:35).

Scripture also says,

  • For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come (Heb 13:14).
  • The end of all things is near. Therefore, be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray (1 Peter 4:7).
  • But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells (2 Peter 3:13).

This commercial is not morbid. Rather, it is almost joyful. For indeed, although earthly glories fade, Scripture says (in many different passages) that trouble doesn’t last forever (cf Psalm 30:6).

The commercial ends with a photograph being taken. Ultimately, each moment in life is but a snapshot in time. Time itself and all things are moving downstream, down the river of time and slipping away. God alone remains forever. Our only hope is to be anchored to Him. He is our rock, our firm foundation. His Kingdom is our lasting city. All else fades and slips away.

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