Knock, knock, knock! I had heard that sharp sound before in middle of the night, and it had woken me up before, on at least two occasions. The last two times I initially thought it was someone knocking on the door downstairs but then realised it had just been a dream, turned over and went back to sleep. But a bit like the young Samuel in the bible, this third time I realised that this was actually God trying to get my attention.
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him and he with me.” (Rev. 3:20).
So I went to open the door and there Jesus was, all white and shining and making the inside of my head house look positively disgraceful. I stood awkwardly at the door, saying that the place wasn’t tidy and, actually, it was quite dirty in places and I didn’t think it was ready for him to come in.
But he countered by saying that he was friends with sinners and quite used to that kind of condition and could he come in anyway?
He came in and sat down on the other side of the rough wooden table that seemed to be the main piece of furniture in my head room. It was no great shakes, in fact all the artefacts that I had in the room looked rough and unfinished.
I had “stumbled upon” a site on creativity before I went to bed. In it Scott Berkun makes the profound observation that “an idea is a combination of other ideas”.
Jesus sat at the table and I talked to him about that. He said to make him a meal, it seemed that he had a cake in mind in particular. I went to my cupboards and started looking for ingredients. I was quite happy because I seemed to have some really good ingredients in the cupboards.
And then the dream stopped or I woke up or something.
By “God-incidence” my daughter was making a cake the next morning.
Now a cake is not an intuitive thing. Mixing a combination of raw eggs, sugar, flour and margarine together in a bowl (in the right order) and then putting it into an oven for a certain time at the right temperature is not something that is easy to think up. It is hard to imagine that those ingredients put together would make something that, in combination, is so different from its constituent parts.
But of course that is what God does all the time. He is the only original thinker. He came up with the basic building blocks and put them together in different combinations so that we would get the idea. A soft metal (sodium) combined in the right way with a poisonous gas (chloride) give us a flavour enhancer and preserver (common table salt). Two gases combined together in the right way give us water. And so it goes on. God has about 90 ingredients that he combines in the most creative ways imaginable. His favourite ingredient is carbon and his favourite combination is water. Its another study altogether to look into why that might be so.
So now I’m going to bring out my ingredients and ask God for a recipe that pleases him.