I was listening to an audio book of C.S. Lewis’ The Weight of Glory when I blinked a few times in the striking light of his prose, realizing for the first time what it meant to look along the light and not merely at it. I was stunned. Lewis argued logically in poetic prose. It was so rich and clear. Lewis conversed so long in the western cannon that he wrote with a Western-Christendom accent. He spoke like one who had walked with Truth in the cool of the day through the English countryside and could imitate the Poet’s cadence and tone.
I was overcome with the idea that I was listening to someone who didn’t think about God as much as He thought like God. I purchased a copy of The Weight of Glory before I was done with the audio book and devoured the print by night and audio by day. I was transported out of myself. I had been looking through borrowed contacts. The eyes of my faith were altered.
Using this collection, Lewis restated things about Christian ethics and culture that I had long known, in a new way which brought them into full clarity and converted my very understanding of them. He taught me that joy is a longing that is itself greater than any satisfaction under the sun, that there are no ordinary people and that I wasn’t made for this world. Lewis taught me that the years I’d studied mythology were preparations for THE myth. That poetry doesn’t live in dusty old volumes but is communication itself. Lewis’ poetic knowledge and poetic prose demonstrated how to communicate in a way that transforms imagination and affection with the truth and beauty of the Gospel.
Most importantly, Lewis held The Inner Ring before my burning eyes to show me my naked soul in all its egotism. I am Mark Studdock. Yet Lewis is pastoral and so as the surgical knife goes in so too does the medicine. Lewis challenged me even as he taught me joy.