Two writers walk into a bar. One orders a big bucks smash box cherry bomb and the other, a komodo chamomile. Both raise and drain their glasses. This they do, day after day. In the first days there is no noticeable difference between the two writers. As weeks pass, bbsbcb looks a bit dusty, maybe even crusty around the edges, while kc looks a bit balmy, maybe even faintish green. Each writer finds the look of the other strange and invites the other to try his drink. “No, no. This one quenches me perfectly,” each tells the other. At year’s end bbsbcb is all but scaly and kc is all but blooming. What made the difference?
The dregs, of course.
There is bad thirst leading to bad drink and good thirst leading to good drink. Do we Christian writers of fiction believe this?
“Come, everyone who thirsts,
come to the waters;
and he who has no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without price.
Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy?” (Isaiah 55:1-2a ESV)
Bad thirst is never slaked by bad drink. Having tried to satisfy his thirst with profession, wealth, influence, or pleasure, the imbiber is left thirstier still.
Not so, his komodo chamomile friend.
Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life" (John 4:13,14 ESV).
For what do we thirst? What are we drinking? It matters. Why?
No writer drinks alone. We offer drink to readers, who are as thirsty as we are.
For the fool speaks folly,
And his heart is busy with iniquity,
To practice ungodliness,
To utter error concerning the LORD,
To leave the craving of the hungry unsatisfied,
And to deprive the thirsty of drink (Isaiah 32:6 ESV).
Then the King will say to those on his right, ”Come you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink..." Then the righteous will answer him, saying, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?” And the King will answer them, Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these, my brothers, you did it to me.” (Matthew 25:34, 35a, 37, 40 ESV).
Komodo chamomile, anyone?