By Jaime Nava –
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. It all started because God used words. God had a language that was so epic that it created things. I can only imagine how profound and clever the words, tone, and pitch of God speaking things into existence could possibly be. Every poet tries to do the same thing ever since. They merely imitate the deep words from which all things are.
Language is in everything. It’s what you’re processing as you read. To convey anything we need the words and we need to learn how to use those words. Following the creation narrative it may sound trite to say but video games are full of creative language. The hours and days poured into creating something that evokes an emotional response is probably verging on a number similar to counting sand on the shore. Maybe not, but it’s a lot. There’s different languages too. From Java to C to HTML to whatever. There’s some code hiding behind what you’re reading right now. There’s a deeper text behind the way games work that we will never see. It’s not shown to us because many of us will not ever understand what it all means. Yet, it’s there for you, the player.
I love to write code. I’m an oddball. There’s something empowering about typing out lines of code in an organized way and watching it come to life. It means that I’m not limited by someone else’s imagination. I can unleash an entire world because I know the language necessary to create something from practically nothing. To see someone who is masterful at writing code is something like poetry. Knowing the rules and language and reading line after line, clean, organized, and totally insightful creates learning folds in my brain. It’s inspiring. This is why, I think, people get into writing code for video games in the first place. There’s a sense that nothing is off limits. Dreams can be made into digital reality, virtual reality.
Consider something you drew that you were proud of. Maybe it was a poem you wrote or an article that had particularly good prose. Is there a bench or a row of tiles or something that wasn’t there that you put there? Is it something you created, something you’re proud of? This is the sense of accomplishment I get from writing code. In my line of work, I don’t often see how what I do is affecting people’s lives. There is no real end to what I do. So to have something that I can step back from, that I can look at, that I can say, “It’s finished.” That gives me pleasure. I enjoy creating. It’s in this tiny way we mimic the Creator.
God did indeed create everything in the beginning. His level of code is still being processed by us today. It’s still so far beyond us that we throw up our hands and wait for the technology to get better to understand it. Sure there are things on the surface we don’t understand. We don’t know why some disabilities occur. We still wrestle with cancer. Yet there is a deeper code or as Aslan called it, a “deeper magic”. The Word actually became flesh and tabernacled among us. He kept the code for us. He went to the cross for we who abuse and neglect this creation for our own selfish desires. He went, as was promised in the Word, to be bruised, to bear our iniquity, and by His stripes, we are healed. This was all written long before it happened (Psalm 22 anyone?) and it played like a minor note in a requiem, sad and beautiful all at once. The story continues.
There is a promise of a new creation. This body, the way it is, is really more like a seed that will die. It doesn’t compare to the thing it will blossom into when Christ returns. This promise comes from the Creator Himself, the Word incarnate. It comes from the great poet who loses not the tiniest dot of the i or cross of the t. Although the code, the poem, the prose, the song, although it may reach many minor falls, the Great Designer directs our ears to His Word where we hear about His Great Design to save from chaos and cacophony.
When we make order from disorder, when we create something from chaos, let us remember the one who first created, who sustains, and who brings a New Creation among us, even today. It’s in the very Word of God, Jesus Christ, that all things will be put into final order.