Whitman, Apple, and the Powerful Play
Last year Apple ran a profoundly impactful ad for its new iPad Air. It’s a montage where Robin Williams reads from Walt Whitman’s ponderous poem “Oh me! Oh life!” which finishes with the million-dollar question, “What good amid these, O me, O life?”
And Whitman’s answer to his own question struck me dead in my tracks.
That you are here—that life exists and identity,That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.
“What is the point of being alive if you don’t at least try to do something remarkable?”
If you’re facing the nine-to-
five 4:59 rat-race straight in the face or you’re having the same shallow conversations with the same surface-level friends, it may feel like your entire day is like waiting for the “Skip Ad” option on a YouTube video. Just. be. over. now!
That’s not life; that’s existence.
What’s your contribution? Whose life have you enhanced today? Whose smile was made possible by you? Where are you sharing the grace of Jesus and the hope of the Gospel and the promise of second chances from a big, loving Heavenly Father?
Though Whitman may have only seen life as the powerful play, I believe the powerful play is God’s story. We get to play a part in His masterpiece. We get to pick up the brushes and pens of our existence and paint our stories on the mural of life inside His almighty plan. This is the powerful play that in the words of Augustine, our hearts are restless until they find rest in God.
May you find rest in your identity as a child of God. May you live in the knowledge of a bigger story that God’s calling you into deeper. And may you contribute your verse to God’s story today.