If I could put time in a bottle…

In March, a tornado blew through Monroe City, Mo. and pretty much tore First Baptist Church up from its foundation. The pastor and several members were in the basement at the time.

After the skies had cleared the pastor told me he was stumbling through what was left of the 106-year-old building and he happened across a small, copper box poking out from under the cornerstone of what used to be the auditorium. It was a time capsule.

Six months later, with an insurance check in the bank and meeting temporarily in nearby school, the church opened the time capsule. Inside was:

  • A whole Bible (King James, of course)
  • A New Testament
  • A listing of church membership in 1899
  • A copy of the church constitution (possibly the original)
  • Three newspapers from the era, one describing a fire that destroyed the church (thus the rebuilding of the auditorium and the opportunity to “hide” the time capsule). The box had been soldered shut and because it was sealed and hidden from the elements, the newspapers are still “plyable,” not brittle or yellowed.
  • A nail (presumably from construction)
  • An 1899 penny

Isn’t that amazing?

The pastor told me that once they begin construction, they will reseal the box with its contents and will make a new time capsule of artifacts from 2006.

I know this sounds like a sixth-grade social studies project, but what would you put in a time capsule? What represents you? What represents your time?

Incidently, here are the lyrics from Jim Croce’s classic, Time in a Bottle. Does anyone else remember the classic Muppet version of this?

If I could save time in a bottle
The first thing that I’d like to do
Is to save every day
‘Til eternity passes away
Just to spend them with you
If I could make days last forever
If words could make wishes come true
I’d save every day like a treasure and then,
Again, I would spend them with you
But there never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do
Once you find them
I’ve looked around enough to know
That you’re the one I want to go
Through time with
If I had a box just for wishes
And dreams that had never come true
The box would be empty
Except for the memory
Of how they were answered by you

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