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What’s Next? - My Creative Journey (Entry #1)

Most everyone asks, 'What's next?' after the New Year. I ask myself that every day. It's a question that repeats itself from major life events to what's after breakfast, and as you probably guessed, determining what I'd do next after I finished Celestial nagged me for quite a long time. Now that day has come and gone. So what is next?

Well, anyone who's followed me long knows my most immediate step had already been taken. It is true. Another Celestial book is already cooking in my kitchen. My mind caught fire when I found Scriptural evidence that suggests that (for a time) angelic sightings weren't so rare. They even could possibly have been a normal occurance. However, even with my plans for this prequel made, it doesn't mean I haven't hit blanks within the project itself. Sure. You'd think finishing book #1 and establishing an angelic presentation meant a smoother writing process going forward. Right? Wrong! Celestial: Age of Silence actually challenges me on a level the first Celestial hadn't. (No. I'm not kidding.) It's one thing to Scripturally generate a unique, Biblically compatible portrayal of angels for an adventure epic. It's another to tightly weave those same concepts into a setting that's been left largely blank in our historical records (a choice I made for thematic relavance). Plus, this is my first plot that directly impacts two characters equally. We're talking a close-knit duetertagonist-ship between an angel and a human. So with all that and its heaps of new heavy faith questions, are you surprised this story has me creeping along with every step?

Now, writing Age of Silence is not a drudgery to me. I love it! I pray over my tricky choices with God, my Creative Master, and He's answered me many times. The story mostly comes in bits and pieces. More a trickle than a roar, but each drop is worth its weight in sunshine gold. These inspirations don't come to me by some christian-flavored spiritural mysticism either. Nor do they come to me by reading into random obtuse 'signs'. Hearing the Spirit is to observe all things and take all thoughts captive in the light of His Word. By these, He's used the simplest things--A spoken word; A random visual; An awkward moment;--to fuel my imagination. It's amazing! And once I encounter those moments, the Scriptural passages I read/listen to every day pulls them into focus and becomes material I suddenly crave to apply in Celestial: Age of Silence. Still, I keep facing a major problem. My heart gets stirred, but that nagging question returns. 'Okay. But what next?'

You see, these revelations never strike me soley as creative inspiration. They consistently challenge my personal life. That's what Biblical Creativity is all about after all. It's about experiencing further sanctificaiton in Christ by Biblically handling our talents. But whenever Scripture speaks to me, I ponder. Is this revelation for Age of Silence? Or is it just for me? The Pharisees knew God's Word by heart but missed its point. How wrong would it be of me to do as they? To hear but not to listen? To seek His Words just for use in fiction and not in my walk? At times, I wish I perfectly knew what to do.

But, perhaps, maybe my view should reverse. Maybe, instead of focusing on what I wish I knew, I rely more on what I do know. God is our perfect Creator, after all. He'd have already made clear what I need most. So what do I know? Well, I know I was fallen. That everyone is born severed from God and hopelessly lost to our love for sin. Yet, even before the beginning, God's redemptive plan was so preconcieved, He patterned the very fabric of creation itself after it. That plan was Jesus. God chose to love us. He sacrificed His willing Son to raise up with Him a new people to newness of life. That way, for all who repent and seek Him, He'd grant the greatest gift. Not heaven or eternal life. But He Himself. I also know I sought out His forgiveness. His Spirit now indwells in me, as a mere downpayment for the fullness of His presence to come, and I already know His mission is to see all who will one day come to Him be found. That mission existed since Eden. That mission lives on today, and now His mission is mine too. These things I know.

So, as I remind myself of this, I know what is next. I'll take all these revelations and first apply them in my closeness to my Savior. Thereby, in first cherishing Him as my treasure, it shall manifest in my life for the benefit of present and future Believers around me. These things are first in importance. Celestial: Age of Silence can afford a little wait, and that's not a bad thing. Couldn't be more perfect actually. After all, don't the most impactful deeds come from the most impacted people?

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