Tolkien believed that all myth, all human stories are mere distortions of a larger narrative, the greatest narrative. It was this belief that eventually drew Lewis to sincerely consider the gospel of Christ, and ultimately bring him to embrace it. The Last Table began as a response to film in this vein of thought, to discover the traces of the ultimate narrative in works of film where it was not entirely apparent.
Over the years, The Last Table has transformed into a sincere and hopeful response to life as a whole. Sincerity being the key, for I believe the often difficult truth of life should never scare us away from sharing it, from responding to it with words, for I believe then is when we can often find hope and a way through. The Last Table is in many ways, my public diary, where I tackle life in an effort to try and find that ultimate narrative, no matter how challenging it may often be.
I’ve also coupled all my posts with works of art from a variety of artists in history, and this has led The Last Table to additionally have a heavy influence from those artists and their lives. For instance, you’ll find traces of Van Gogh’s words, that Christ “lived serenely, as an artist greater than all other artists, scorning marble and clay and paint, working in the living flesh,” and how this thought influenced many of his actions throughout his life.
And that, I believe with what I’ll leave you with, the words of Vincent, “If only we try to live sincerely, it will go well with us, even though we are certain to experience real sorrow, and great disappointments, and also will probably commit great faults and do wrong things, but it certainly is true, that it is better to be high-spirited, even though one makes more mistakes, than to be narrow-minded and all too prudent.”
Why the last table ?
It is in reference to the table Christ held His last supper at — the last time He spent with His disciples all together before His crucifixion, the place where the first Holy Communion took place — and also the “loser’s table” as in the persecuted Christians and the crucified Christ, who are losers in this world, yet winners with God.
It is in reference to the table where the wedding supper of the Lamb, in Revelation 19, will be eaten — the last and eternal meal we will share with God on that eighth and eternal day. And, of course, it is a parallel in names with Lewis’s own Narnia end time, The Last Battle.
It is in reference to the idiom “bring it to the table” — an idea of bringing this world to the table so it may be dissected and clarified, so we may come to appreciate God’s design of this world, and God’s ever-present effect on the people of this world. And even our own nature’s alteration of that good creation.
So, I have named it “The Last Table” as an image of sin and death’s defeat, the community of hopeful love we can now enjoy as a Church, the beauty of creation, the servant/ruler role of Christians, God’s blessing of His children, and God’s eternal reign and eternal communion we will enjoy with Him dearly. It is a look at life through a hopeful and sincere lense.
And who am I ?
I am Cody Connor Kelley. I am a student, occasional teacher, tea-aholic, and writer, currently finishing my MA in Shakespeare Studies. I have a BA in English Literature and a BA in Biblical Studies, and have previously taught both adult learners in college and children at a traditional academy. In addition to the more formal and personal posts of The Last Table, I also write short epistolary stories under my pseudonym Sire the fox, whom you’ll find scurrying about the site, at The Letter Desk, while I am additionally working on a handful of novels to eventual get published and an extensive collection of poetry. Outside of writing, I enjoy painting, learning French, playing the violin, watching old movies, eating dark chocolate, and picking flowers in the meadows of the world. I hope to use language in a manner of intentionality, drawing out a kind hope and self-reflective humility. Through a literary ministry, I write for the underspoken and misunderstood, the emotionally broken, the lonely, the wandering families, and the unloved children. I write for those like the Canaanite woman begging for scraps from the table, eager to see her seated beside the King. May we all be brought to His table, that we may recline with Him dearly.