Jason Lewis has got his wings.
The Sex and the City alum stars as Joe Strong, an angel, in NBC’s new supernatural series, Midnight, Texas. “I read it, and I was like, ‘Wings? I get to fly!’ ” Lewis, 46, tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue. “Because in my imagination I’m still 10 years old. I didn’t account for the CGI, but I can lie to my godsons and nephews.”
Another trait Lewis loves about his character is “that his eyes are wide open,” he says. “He’s been around for so long and had to go through so many shifts and struggles in terms of what he holds to be right and the way to operate in the world. People who have had that worldliness, that experience, allow for a lot more for the growth of others and the spaces they need to be in and have a greater compassion for the struggles we all go through.”
For more of Lewis’ interview, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday
So does he believe in the supernatural? “Yes, absolutely,” Lewis says. “I think we are far from understanding a lot of what is going on around us. Even Einstein believed in the divine.”
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Lewis admits “stories” have kept him most grounded over the years in Hollywood. “It’s why I like what I do. I pulled away from the industry for a while because I think I was chasing success, and I wasn’t feeling good about what I was doing,” he says. “I went to libraries as a kid. Stories are a great way to not only know you aren’t alone but to get dialogues and wisdom from around the world.”
If all else fails, “just smile a lot,” Lewis adds. “Happiness and humility just comes from being grateful for all that you have in the moment.”
Midnight, Texas airs Mondays (10 p.m. ET) on NBC.