“So where does it come from?” the young woman asked.
“From a place on the edge of tomorrow looking back at yesterday,” I replied.
I’ve been asked so many times about my writing. To the point of embarrassment I read warm, generous comments about my work and deal with them one word at a time. It’s the only way I can accept it. But she wanted to be there where I go to find the words. I couldn’t take her there. I could only describe it from the outside looking in.
“I have fallen in love with words,” I told her. “Not that I have any right to, but I have been courting them long enough that we’ve become one. Like a marriage, I treat words with respect and select from my limited vocabulary the ones that best tell the story as I see it.”
“So where do you find the stories?” she asked.
“They find me. They come falling down around me like a gentle rain on a summer’s evening when you are hot and tired from a long exhausting day. The thoughts are like droplets of water that hit me one by one, but after a while they all form together and saturate my mind with such an intensity that I must respond to them or drown,” I told her.
“So they start with a single thought?” she wondered.
“No, they start with a flicker of light,” I said. Then pausing for a moment to come up with an appropriate image, I was reminded of a silly, childish thing I do.
“In the middle of cold winter night when you have piled on extra blankets and all the lights are off, did you ever roll over in bed and see little streaks of lightening flicker beneath the covers?” I asked.
“No, I don’t believe I have,” she replied with an awkward look on her face.
“Then you must sleep well at night. You see, my mind doesn’t stop. I often awaken in the middle of the night with visions of people and places I’ve been. I scramble to make sense of them, but fail most every time. It’s then when I tuck my head under the covers that I see them. Little flashes of light caused by static. I love when that happens. I’m creating my own personal lightening.
I find peace under the covers. To this very day, whenever I want to hide away from the world, I pull the cover up over my head and think, “No one knows where I am right now.” It’s great!
Well, the other night I rediscovered lightening,” I said.
Then spinning around on my heal, like a fancy magician, I said “Ta Da! “That’s where the story begins. Like a spark in the dark part of my mind, it flashes and grabs my spirit. It’s God talk, I believe.”
“God talk?” she asked.
“Yes, God doesn’t always use words to guide us. That’s where I always went wrong. I was listening for words. God sends sparks. Little oooohs and aaaaahhhhs. Sometimes it’s an unfamiliar sound that pokes at your curiosity stirring it, daring you to look. Yet, most of us turn away not recognizing that it could be the answer we have been searching for all of our lives. But we are spoiled by technology that dazzles us and steals away our imagination and buries it under brain numbing nonsense.
But God Talk is sacred and singular. He sends me lightening under my covers and also people, thousands of people. Each of them writing their own story and never recognizing that they are in control of how the story ends. So I steal from them the things that they discard along the way. Brilliant thoughts, spirit filled words with wings that take flight in my soul and flood my mind with a million possibilities.
But, they don’t see it. I do.”
“Like the movie “The Sixth Sense,” she said laughing.
“Exactly. I see dead people, too,” I said slowly and deliberately..
The smile went off her face. I laughed at her.
“They are dead to the world! Dead to the gifts that God has given them. Their ears can’t hear the God talk. So I see it, I hear it, I write about it and talk about it in my speeches and seminars.”
“Maybe it’s another way,” she said.
“Another way for what?” I asked.
“Maybe God knows that the only way He can get to some of them is to use people like you, writers, poets and speakers. Your words, His thoughts,” she said.
“Yes, and through you, my friend. He sent you here. You gave me my story for today. You were my spark of lightening. We are each other’s light in a world that has been dimmed by negativity, doubt and fear.
Be the light and listen. That’s God Talk.”