Update to Pilgrim's Progress

by Luke Holmes June 7, 2017

Proposal:  A modern character update to John Bunyan's classic Pilgrim's Progress*

Character Name: Distraction

Character Summary:  Distraction is always, well, distracted.  He speaks boldly about following the path to the Heavenly City but never makes it very far on the road. He is definitely on the right path but only travels in bursts and has long periods of inactivity.  Christian finds him just beyond the cross after he loses his burden, and they have the following conversation:

Christian:  Are you traveling on this path, friend?  Might you be able to point me in the way to go?

Distraction:  I am definitely all about this path, and I'm so excited I lost by my burden.  I can point you in the right way for sure.  I’m so blessed to be on the path and always look for new people to talk with about it. 

C:  Have you been here in this spot long?

D: Not really, no.  I entered through the gate maybe four or five years ago. Can it really have been that long?  I was intent to get to the Heavenly City, but you know, some stuff came up. So I parked here for a while.

C: Four or five years?

D: Yeah maybe longer.  I kinda lost track after the second "How to Go Further" conference on the path.

C: Don't you want to see the King, my friend?  He has already done so much for me when he removed my burden.  I can't imagine knowing the King waits for me to arrive, and stay here in the same spot for years.  Don’t you have a desire to get to the Celestial City?

D:  Yeah, well, I know I already made it further than a lot of people.  I'm just thankful, ya know? I just feel so blessed.  I really intend to get around to seriously reading that letter from the King someday. 

C: You have a letter from the King and haven't read it? What have you been doing?  What is more important? 

D: Oh I’ve read it some.  I subscribe to the “Daily Path Podcast."  And in fact, I’ve got over two dozen versions of the letter on my phone here.  At first, I started on the letter, but I noticed the grass on this side of the path wasn't as lush as the other side. So I spent some time researching how to make grass grow in the shade.

C: Grass?

D:  Yeah. Then I remembered the letter and picked it up again. Then I decided before I went on more I should share some with some people about how great the the letter from the King is. 

C:  Oh, well, that sounds good.  It's good to share with others.  But how can you share about something you haven't read? 

D:  Well, I did read part of it, before I got distracted.  I even shared part of the letter I read with some people, but then I started reading about people who don't have a letter from the King; they haven't even heard.  It’s terrible that some people don’t have a letter from the King.

C: But you do have a letter and haven't read it.  And you're still in the same spot on the path you've been for years?

D: Well, then I met my new friend, Entertainment.  Have you met him?  No matter where you are or what's going on, he takes your mind off things.  He's not really a bad guy.  And he is loads of fun at parties. 

C: Parties.  On the path to the Celestial City? 

D: Well, it gets pretty boring here.  Entertainment and I grab people on the path and get them to stay with us.  We don’t want people to think pilgrims on the path are all fuddy duddies who don’t know how to have fun.

C: Do many stay? 

D: Lots.  You might be surprised.  This spot is comfortable.  I want everybody to feel good and enjoy their time here.  I'm afraid if I go further down the path, the next spot won't be as comfortable. It won't have the things I'm used to here.  I'd just like to have this comfortable spot a little further down the path. 

Christian begins to look around and sees how comfortable he has made that spot on the path. Distraction begins to show him some pictures he found on the path, but Evangelist grabs him by the arm and pushes him away. 

*(I would never change Pilgrim’s Progress)