The moon’s silver light shined down upon a quiet neighborhood street, where here and there windows stood glowing with light from within houses. Now and then some of the lights would turn off, and some would turn on. But as the hours rushed along, all the beaming lights faded away, trusting that the moon would continue steadfast, and wage their war against the darkness; yet one light did not fade away, but like a watchman continually scanned everything in its grasp, exposing dust and swallowing darkness.
Thomas closed his eyes. He saw something. It was a world, and he could see a mountain top with clear streams flowing down its sides. And then he saw a sun and a forest, a luscious meadow, and an ocean longer and wider than the eye could see. He saw a blue sky and a valley running towards a desert land.
“Perfection!” the place seemed to shout, and Thomas smiled, feeling grass beneath his toes, and smelling the scent of roses and pine and fresh water, and . . . something he didn’t feel he could describe without marring some of its beauty. Wind grazed his face.
Then a strange sensation struck him – a feeling of embarrassment – and the parabola of his smile began to stretch horizontally. He felt completely out of place, as if his presence, though fully desired, was unfit for this world he saw.
Thomas opened his eyes. He was still in his bedroom sitting on his chair next to his dark, wood desk, and his light was still shining. In his hand lay a pencil held over a blank page in a notebook. Thomas sighed. He believed he had so much to say, yet he suffered speechlessness. How could he tell someone else the wonder and amazement he felt when he ventured into the world of imagination? He’d expected it to be hard, but not impossible, like it felt at the moment.
Some words came to him, and he quickly wrote them down, but then crossed them out soon after. They didn’t do justice to what he imagined. This process repeated several times before he lost motivation and set his pencil down.
“Has all already been said?” He considered. “God already spoke the world into being and is speaking even now! C.S. Lewis already created Narnia, and Tolkien Middle Earth. Is there beauty yet to be revealed? Is there a glory that has yet to be spoken and discovered? I’m thinking about this too hard . . . .” Thomas put his right hand to his chin and gently rubbed his fingers back and forth on it.
“Will these words ever come to fruition? Is the fruition of this time words themselves? It must be more than that. Fruition is a process. Ideas must be conceived and born in the form of words. Then they must live and proclaim the glory their symbols represent,” Thomas folded his hands and rested them on the notebook. He inhaled and exhaled, feeling content.
“Why don’t I just write these thoughts down?” He contemplated and proceeded to do so.
He wrote, “Is a nation born in a single day? No one has heard of such a thing, the Scripture says. Like nations, ideas must be conceived and then born in the form of words. The process of fruition in this case ranges from the imagination to what the reader profits from reading. And in a sense, if the words are words that point to glory and mirror Christ’s Words, then the words do not cease to bear good fruit.”
“Yet sometimes this process does not bear good fruit, either because the ideas were conceived in sin, or because they came to words too early, not having enough time to grow. Sometimes these words die early, and sometimes they can be nurtured and sustained. Editors are like nurses, and newly spoken words are like children. Some words die early, and some old. Still more never die. Words that never die are those that give life. They are living words, like God’s words. They are words of creation, words of love, words that speak glory . . . .”
“Thoughts need to rest and develop before words can do them justice,” A smile of satisfaction formed over Thomas’s face as he was now assured that the time he had spent so far was not a waste. He continued, “Ideas need to grow, and expectations that hold writing to be impossible or easy, and not somewhere in between, will sooner or later face disappointment. For the world fell into sin, making us incapable of speaking glorious words, but God sent His one and only Son, so that he might save us from the horrors of sin and to the glories of His presence. So now we can speak of good things, because we have been saved, but we cannot speak perfectly, because we are being saved.”
“At the moment of conception the Spirit forms a child, and this is miraculous. Time needs to pass for the child to take shape; it will be nine months before the child is fully ready to enter the world outside his mother’s womb. For the process of speaking, the mind is the womb, the imaginations and ideas are the child, and God is Creator of them both.”
Thomas shut his eyes. He saw the world again. It looked like the world he lived in, except that it was perfect, or almost perfect. He realized now that it was his own presence that marred its perfection. The very wandering of his mind to the place brought imperfection. Yet now he was not ashamed.
He knew that even the best of his words couldn’t describe the glory of this place, not only because he was not fluent in the language of glory, but also because he could not see the extent of the glory.
Yet he was not upset, because he saw more now than he saw before. He saw that there was beauty even in the midst of his want of vision and lack of perfection, that his battling against the muting forces of sin and evil was itself glorious; that the full glory of this place, though for a time out of reach and inexpressible, was actually more glorious with his struggle, because the substance of the story all of the sudden welcomed and required God to be in the midst of it.
Thomas opened his eyes and exhaled a deep breath. Contentment and satisfaction embraced his soul like a mother her new born child.
“So speak good things . . . . Speak life and speak glory. All of us were made to do so. So let the deadly silence of our lips kneel before our Father who speaks all things, and shout hosanna in the highest . . . hosanna in the highest . . . hosanna in the highest!”
The grandfather clock struck, and Thomas listened to its voice. It was time to rest. He laid his pencil down and turned off his desk light.
“I will write a story,” he said. “A story of life and death and life. An imitation story of God’s. Because that is a way that I can speak His glory. Because that’s a way His glory can be proclaimed.”
Thomas stood up, and soon lay down to rest, knowing that more could have and should have been accomplished that day, but trusting that even his weaknesses and failures would be mediums of a greater glory. And then Thomas closed his eyes.