If you were going to build a time capsule for people in future generations of your family to dig up one hundred years from today, what would you include? What would you want them to see and hold from this time period that would give them a chance to really understand your life and the culture we live in?
I’d include my first study Bible — the one in which I highlighted verses and wrote quotes in the back from sermons I’d heard over the hears before giving it to my dad after he became a Christian. After his death, it became mine again. It’d be a snapshot of the Warren family at the turn of the century.
Speaking of Bibles, I’d definitely include the family Bible my grandmother used to own and is now in my possession. She jammed family photos inside (with names and dates) and article clippings from her small-town newspaper in Arkansas whenever a family name would appear (the paper once ran a story when her brother accepted the call to preach—can you imagine such an article today?). She also included handwritten lists of birthdays and dates of death going back quite a few years.
I’d also include some old photos of relatives who future generations of Warrens will know nothing about. I’d make sure to include a bio about each of them so future generations would understand what their ancestors believed and the sacrifices they made.
I’d toss in a few of the most important letters I’ve exchanged with relatives over the years—the ones that felt like defining moments in our family’s history.
It might sound a little self-serving, but I’d include a copy of my book, Higher Grounds: When God Steps Into the Here and Now, because it includes stories about my family’s spiritual history. I wrote it because I wanted to make sure those stories didn’t get lost.
My grandmother had some recipe cards that deserve to be included. She made the best apple cake in the world and her mush was second to none too — although, I can’t say I’ve ever tasted anybody else’s mush. But it was a connection to her southern routes that future generations might love to resurrect.
I have a large collection of autographed books. I’d pick a couple and include them. Maybe my autographed copies of R. C. Sproul’s Scripture Alone and A Taste of Heaven.
How could I leave out my high school yearbooks from 1982-84, complete with their pictures of our short shorts and feathered hair that was parted down the middle for the guys or Farrah Fawcett-styled hair for the girls? And I’d love for future generations to know that Pepsi (not Coke!) was our beverage of choice in 1984.
I can see that I’d need a rather large time capsule, but nobody said anything about a size limit. So, let’s keep filling it.
It’d be fun to include a piece of technology—like an iPhone I’m no longer using. I’m thinking I could include a charger and then make sure there’s no passcode on the phone. Then maybe I’d leave a letter to let people know that I left a few videos of myself on the device explaining what life is like now and how I prayed for them, even though I didn’t even know their names.
Oh, and how about including a Keurig without any instructions to see if they could figure out what it is? That’d be fun.
I’d slip in my one remaining bottle of Drakkar cologne from the 1980s because it’ll be due to make a comeback by then.
Since Twinkies nearly went extinct a few years ago, how could I not buy a box and put it into the time capsule with a post-in note asking if the Twinkies did indeed stay fresh forever, as the old legend says?
How about you? What would you put into your time capsule?