The One About Dungeons And Dragons

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I’ll admit it, I’m a nerd. While I enjoy the non-nerdy things like sports and the outdoors I also enjoy the occasional board game or puzzle hunt but my favorite nerdy past time is, hands down, role playing games, particularly Dungeons And Dragons. Building a character and adventuring through various settings gives the opportunity to escape from reality for a few hours and while it’s easy to get lost in the game, especially if the dungeon master is a good one, there is always the return to reality. For me the draw is the story, the opportunity to use my imagination and think about how my character would respond to certain situations and relate to other characters within the world that has been built.

While I simply enjoy the progression of the story for others the opportunity to play the hero is a big draw of Dungeons And Dragons and other role playing games. Knowing that there’s a threat looming over the world that will upset the created order and that you have been presented with the opportunity to stop it and prevent a disaster is a big draw for a lot of players. I think it’s easy for us as Christians to fall in to the same mindset in the real world. We want to play the hero of the story. We want to be larger than life. We want to go on the epic quest to save the world but the reality is that no matter how hard we try we’ll always fall short. On top of that the story of life in this world is one of heartache and suffering in a land where injustice rules the day and that often adds insult to injury.

It’s a story that’s familiar to many of us. It begins with the universe being set in motion by 4 simple words, “let there be light” (Genesis 1:3, The Voice) and culminates with the creation of mankind. In chapter 3 the adversary, often referred to in the world of role playing games as the big bad evil guy, shows up and hatches his master plan. Satan spoils God’s perfect creation, another casualty of the cosmic war between good and evil and yet, in midst of the turmoil and strife, there’s hope. God’s promise that “the woman’s child will stomp your head and you will strike his heel” (Genesis 3:15b, The Voice) is fulfilled in the birth, life, death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. At the end of Matthew and beginning of Acts Jesus then passes the torch to us. He invites us in to the story though not necessarily in the way that we would have imagined. With the war already won we get to be heralds of good news. We still get to have a part in the story even if we’re not the main character.

I’ve often wondered how things would be different if the Fall hadn’t happened. I think about how much simpler things would be and what it would be like to walk through the garden and talk to God face to face. Unfortunately I can’t do that and am instead resigned to the cling to the hope that the Gospel story gives. A story that runs counter to what enemy wants us to believe and what the world has decided is true. I read the description of the new heaven and the new and I long for the day when I’ll get to see it in person but for now I’m content to wait. I’m content to pray. I’m content to serve and I’m content to love in midst of a world that needs a different story, the one that Christians have been telling for centuries. Let’s remember this story, our story. Let’s sing it. Let’s speak it and, by God’s grace, let’s live it.

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