The Craftsman

"The one sent gathered the sounds to his breast and clutched them there, both what was sharp and what was flat, what was wrong, what was unfair."

"Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil." (Matthew 5:17)

THE NOTES HAD BEEN WRITTEN, the song sung, with a few bars and beats out of measure. Many had heard it, many had been carried along by its tune over the ages. Yet, as time is wont to do, it had fallen out of use and was not sung, out-of-tune, if ever. Its own generations did not recognize it, lost in the flavor of a new era, of minor notes and wide resting places, of violence strung upon their bow. Of silence where the song had once carried the air, once captured the heart and cleansed the mind. None knew it save a few musicians dedicated to God.

And the dust rose and the dust settled and a cry came from the people. Not the song but discordant, a wail, a beseechment of the heavens and the Power who held things there. Misunderstood, misheard, ignored in His speaking, He held court above the cry, not immune but inured, not impatient but of longstanding, of longsuffering. And the cry lifted louder, and He bent His ear.

None could hear what was said but Him who held the key, who knew the beat, who wrote the rhythm. Who in the beginning sang the song and had it stolen from Him, and there, in that moment began a harmony anew. Though the music had shifted, He strung His bow and played a tune upon those He loved, this tune now dead, begged its remembrance, begged its singing.

But not of earth. Not of soil and flesh and bated breath. Not of hatred nor violence nor selfish gain. The tune could only become upon the breath of one who the heavens declared in glorious wonder. And he was sent and what he wrote began in singular fashion, as a chord played on repeat, largely ignored except by those chosen to listen.

A single finger became two, became four, became six, became loud enough heads turned, either in faith or in grimace. Either in hatred because they loved to hear their own cock-and-crow. Or in weakness because no one had sung in force since long ago. The anger grew and at its side, a scattering of notes. What they thought they sang, they couldn't hear was horrifying in tone. A hodgepodge of opinions and offenses aired for all to tolerate, for those to join in with their deception or those to wish for better days. Not here, not now! Please here, today. No, not like that! Like this we sang, and out of timing, all voiced what wasn't anything.

The one sent gathered the sounds to his breast and clutched them there, both what was sharp and what was flat, what was wrong, what was unfair. And in his grasp, he formed them new into a song he planned to sing, crafting from what seemed like erroneous notes, an orchestra performance on a stellar scale. Something epic, something strong, that only he could do, and yet he waited for the moment when the Power made His move.

Wrong notes played wrongly forced time ahead, and the wrong ones kept singing until the man was dead. But death only captured what the man had enmeshed, only amplified the moment when the song began to play, and the people heard their voices in what drifted from the grave, heard magnificence created by him and couldn't figure how it came. Except that this was how it would happen and their chaos not that at all in the hands of the Craftsman who'd written it all.

For the time extended, for a moment, in triplet fashioned, his note returned amongst them only grander, more demanding. As a heartbeat pounds its life into the ears of its mother, so his song began to play alongside their words and rhythms. Not as old, like before; that had gone and been reimagined. Some still held onto its staff, but the song now lived as truth, now sang as love, now shared as power, strong enough to take the soil and breathe new life, anew enough to last forever.

“For you have heard of my previous life in Judaism: I (Paul) practiced the methods of force and coercion and persecuted the people of God, and I tried to destroy them or pressure them back into the empty rituals of Judaism. I was promoting the forms and ceremonies of the old symbolic system more intensely than most of my fellow Jews, and I was unreasonably zealous for the powerless traditions of my fathers.” (Galatians 1:13-14, Remedy)

“For if our healing and restoration could be accomplished by keeping the law or performing rituals, then God did not need to promise to heal us, because we could have healed ourselves; but God did graciously promise Abraham to provide the only Remedy to cure our sin-sick hearts and minds.”
(Galatians 3:18, Remedy)

“But Scripture is clear: All humanity is infected with selfishness and is imprisoned by this terminal condition. It is by trust that we experience the only cure, the One promised—Jesus Christ—who was given to humankind as the Remedy to this terminal condition.” (Galatians 3:22, Remedy)

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Suzanne D. Williams, Author