Friday, December 25, 2009

The Incarnation of the Word

I’ve just finished reading The Mystery of the Word: Parables of Everyday Faith, by Mike Mason, and I’m challenged, feeling the weight of his words about Words, dipping deeper into the seriousness of writing as a Christian.

He says that the personal appearance of Jesus in his writing is “the only reason I write anything. All that vain spilling of ink is utterly worthless to me, except as a lowly means of setting up, or inviting, the possibility of Incarnation, the possibility of a real manifestation of Christ within the pages of a book and so, hopefully, in the life of some anonymous reader.”

Really? The only reason? Yes. For the Christian writer, it has to be. Only what’s done for Christ will last.

He questions whether this high aim might not be “an absurd vanity.”

“For can my artificial art really become a vehicle for the living God? Can my mere words be transformed into Word?”

Can they? Yes. Even as we are, bodily, the incarnation of God when we walk in the Spirit in this life. When we abide in Him, the reality of His presence radiates out into the world around us, without our doing.

Can it be so also with our words?

In writing, Mike says, it’s not up to us to make this happen. “It’s His job to appear. It’s my job to pray, to hope, to write—and to write, indeed, as though my life depended upon it, as though all my ink were a spillage of blood, and all for the sake of Christ.”

I’m coming to see that writing, for the Christian, is that serious. It frightens me. It awes me. The thought of Jesus being incarnate in my words has changed the way I approach this occupation forever.

1 comment:

Kristen said...

Wow. That's really profound. And maybe a bit daunting.