Rainy Day Inspiration: God, Coffee, and C.S. Lewis

DSC_0002Thursday has dawned wet, drizzly and dark gray; rain light enough to still walk the dog but heavy enough to make me wish I hadn’t. Hence the wet-dog towel rub down wrestling event. Scout found the whole experience invigorating, and I have to admit she fluffs up nicely.

But this is the perfect writing day. Rain; coffee; more rain to come; more coffee to come.

NEW WORK: Yesterday afternoon, reading in the big leather chair in the “tea-room,” I finally got unstuck from page one of my new project,  First Thessalonians, C.S. Lewis, and more coffee.

DSC_0005The C.S. Lewis was for my evening Men’s Room small group, but it’s impossible for me to read Lewis and not be inspired to take my thinking to a deeper level. So once again, and this is typically the case, good writing finds itself rooted in great reading.

It all came together for me during conversation at church in the evening. We were discussing a passage from Lewis’s The Problem of Pain (chapter 3) – here’s a sample:

“When we want to be something other than the thing God wants us to be, we must be wanting what, in fact, will not make us happy…”

Most of the guys offered helpful thoughts about the reading, and we talked about the ongoing war between what Lewis refers to as “our natural self” and “The Christian way.” (Mere Christianity).

DSC_0003Then I shared with my friends about my afternoon’s work. “What I wanted to do was to go to the driving range and hit some golf balls,” I said. “I wanted to take a nap. I wanted to watch the Fox Soccer Channel. I wanted to eat a stuffed-crust pizza and watch a good movie. But, instead, what I did was to find a comfortable chair, pour myself a cup of coffee, and read an entire book of the New Testament, twice, prayerfully and carefully.”

HOLY SPIRIT INFILTRATION: What I wanted would not have made me happy. However, by following the leading of the Spirit and actively engaging both God and God’s Word, I eventually found myself deeply satisfied and completely content.

At one point I paused from my reading/thinking/praying and enjoyed a reflective moment where I was able to stand apart from myself and observe. And what I saw was a poignant reminder of the exact principle C.S. Lewis had articulated so well.

By the time I had completed my Bible reading I felt an emerging clarity (and energy) regarding the direction of my new project. What’s happening, I believe, is a Holy Spirit infiltration. God is prompting my creativity, and my new work will move forward only to the extent that I invite the Author of Creation into the process.

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