The Spark of Creation
MAMA He doesn’t speak to you anymore, does he? Not since before the rain.
NOAH No. No. I don’t know what father wants.
The spark of creation, that’s all you’ve got left now.
The spark of creation will have to be your guide.
What do you do when the opinion you value most – a voice you have grown deeply accustomed to – is silent?
The above dialogue is from the musical Children of Eden. It tells a biblically inspired story of creation in the first act, and a similarly inspired story of Noah in the second. The story isn’t completely accurate to the events of the Bible, but it’s close. The musical leans heavily into the impact of making a choice, and how the choice to disobey the Father in the Garden of Eden opened us up to a world of chaos caused by our own free will.
Children of Eden was one of the first shows that we produced at Sterling UMC (back in 2007). In those days we had such limited theatrical resources that I would frequently pick a few key scenes that had to look exactly right and build the design for the rest of the show based on having things in place for those moments.
This was one of those scenes. Noah is on the deck of the arc, calling out to God in the darkness. It paints a major contrast to the colors of creation in Act 1 or the parade of animals boarding the arc a few scenes before. He’s defeated, he’s scared, and he has no idea what God wants him to do. He feels abandoned, though God is with him in ways he can’t understand.
For all of the liberties that the script takes, the emotion of this moment is exactly right. For Noah, for many heroes in the Bible, for you and for me.
For as long as humans have walked on God’s Earth, we have longed to hear his voice. We have sought the guidance of any force that seems to be of God; pieced together the wind and the weather, searched the stars for breadcrumbs leading back to the divine. We’ve gotten it wrong at least as many times as we’ve gotten it right.
A prophet is defined as someone who declares a message that they believe has come from God. The true prophets have inspired hope, justice and mercy; they have validated the Gospel and changed the world.
Unfortunately, anyone and anything can claim to bear a message and speak on behalf of the Lord. The Bible warns over and over and over again about false prophets and how easy it is to be led astray. After all, when you are scared and alone the voices of the world will be the loudest and the easiest to hear.
But do not be discouraged. The Spirit of God is living in you.
The prophet Joel proclaimed that a day was coming when God’s Spirit would be poured out on all people and, on Pentecost, that prophecy came into focus. The age of the Spirit had come: Jesus provided us salvation and gave his followers new life in the Spirit.
If no outer force will show you your course, you’ll have to look inside
Your only illumination, the spark of creation
You have been anointed by the Spirit to hear his voice. Because of Jesus, you are the prophet you seek.