Sea Things

“What’s in a word?” — from “The Adventures of the Boy Jesus”

Jesus was in a good mood. Not that his moods varied that much. But when he was feeling good, he knew it. And he thanked Abba. And when he spoke to Abba he said:

“You are good, Abba.”

“I am actually you, or rather everyone,” Abba said.

“What does that mean?”

“Answer this question,” Abba said. “What’s in a word?”

“What? What is in a word?”

“I am going to tell you. Something simple and true. Why do you think every person on earth who takes the trouble to can speak to me?”

“Because you speak?”

“True,” Abba responded. “Now answer this. Think very carefully. Why couldn’t Moses get a name and an address from the one he thought of as God?”

“Why? Why couldn’t he?”

“Because the word, which I am and you are and everyone is, is the opposite of what people mean by God. People think of God as a child who can throw things around if he likes instead of the One who is one with Creation itself. Are you hearing me?”

“Yes,” Jesus said.

“There is more,” Abba continued. “The word I carry within me is how we are to be, how we are to live, how we can be masters of creation. Creation is past every word. It is. It is actuality. Reality. Everything. No one can go past it. Remember what Moses got. ‘I am who I am. I’ll be who I’ll be.’”

“And you?” Jesus asked.

“I’m like you. You’re like me. We speak. We are words.”

“You’re not that One then?”

“No more than you are. Or anyone else is. We are part of it. Part of it. We are special. I’ll ask again.”


“What’s in a word?”

“What I get when we talk. How to live. How to be. What we discuss?”

“Doesn’t that suggest that whoever says I am made us to live properly?”

“Of course, Abba. Of course he did.”

“Then what is so hard?”

“We rebel.”


“We fall.”

“So tell me again, Jesus, What’s in a word?”

Jesus laughed. “A way out,” he muttered..

“Well, well, well,” Abba said. “Yes. A way out. It’s about time, don’t you think?”

Jesus thought he heard a trace of laughter.

Stephen C. Rose writes daily. Medium is his drafting board. Kindle his marketplace. You the reader his hopeful supporter. He promotes his thought and art on Twitter and has his own publication on Medium called Everything Comes which any new writer can join on the way to finding his or her way. Drafts of his fiction completed and in progress can be found on Coffeelicious which is also a Medium publication.