“In the vast expanse of a timeless place, Where silence ruled the outer space…” are the opening lines to Carman’s “The Champion”.
When I first moved up to Inverness, I came as part of a gospel outreach team. Someone in the church was into mime, so he choreographed a mime to “The Champion”. It sets the battle of good and evil, Jesus and Satan, in a boxing ring. There’s music in the background and a Charlton Heston-like voice over commentary. I got to be a demon stalking around the stage threateningly, when I would have preferred to be a saint looking pious and holy.
Last night I had a dream in the genre of Carman. It featured the same kind of music in the background, and the voice commentary – given by the actors involved rather than Charlton Heston. It was a church group performing it, in a very small room. It was just early days of a rehearsal. No one really knew their lines – well, the one person that didn’t know their lines was me. I had a whole scene to myself – I was playing God. I was being prompted by the director, who had to virtually recite my lines for me, and have me repeat them after her. She seemed a little bit annoyed that I didn’t know my lines like the rest of the cast. I told her that I was older than the rest of the cast, and that as God I had a lot of lines to learn.
I decided the night of the next rehearsal to ad-lib rather than go with the lines I was supposed to learn. I knew vaguely the main points and the order in which they came. It was a memorable performance. I used all those big words – omniscient, and omnipotent, and I had a Charlton Heston boom. But there was something more than just the words. I was speaking truth to the audience. As I was walking the stage, my spirit was searching for just the right words to say.
It wasn’t a performance, but there were people sitting in the seats. There weren’t many seats, but they were all full. I turned to one person, and as if I were speaking personally as God, I told them that I had been their watching as they were formed in their mother’s womb. Nothing about them was hidden from me. To someone else I told them that there was no one else qualified to sit on the throne of heaven but me. They thought that Satan was an equal adversary, like matched fighters in a boxing ring, that he was qualified to rule – but he wasn’t and would never be. I really wish I could quote line for line, rather than the sense of it. It was spine tingly awesome.
I woke up, most miffed to not be there anymore. I closed my eyes and tried to will myself back into my dream. It didn’t happen.
“What was that all about?” I asked.
“Heaven,” came the reply. “Everyday you need to parade heaven before a watching world, through your words and actions. There is no stage – just your neighbourhood, your workplace, your home. There is no audience – just the people you meet every day. They need to encounter a God that is omnipotent, a God that watched them being formed in their mother’s womb, a God that will not share power and glory with another. They need to see the amazing greatness of God – through you.”