One night as C. S. Lewis slept, a lion bounded into his dream. He wasn’t scared as much as he was blessed. Later, he named the lion “Aslan.” Then a wardrobe door opened into the wonderful world of Narnia — for 100 million people!
You never know when a door to Narnia may open. “Jack” Lewis inspires us to look for God in daily life. He also encourages us to go to church.
Each Sunday Jack and his brother walked down the street from their home in Oxford (The Kilns) to their church, Holy Trinity. They always arrived fifteen minutes early. They always sat in the same pew, on the left side. Jack always sat behind the pillar, where he could hide from the preacher!
Kristi and I visited Jack’s church. We sat in his pew.
While, Jack waited for the church service to start he prayed the Psalms.
“The most valuable thing the Psalms did for me was to express the same delight in God which made David dance.” He prayed the Psalms with a “hope to be infected!”
- “My heart says of you, ‘Seek his face!’ Your face, Lord, I will seek. Do not hide your face from me.” (Psalm 27:8-9)
- “As the deer pants for streams of water so my soul pants for you, O God… When can I go and meet with God?” (Psalm 42:1-2)
- “How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints for the courts of the Lord.” (Psalm 84:1-2)
- “O Lord… I spread out my hands to you… My soul thirsts for you like a parched land.” (Psalm 143:1, 6)
I love these prayers! They inspire my longing for God. They remind me of times I’ve felt his presence — what heavenly bliss!
Yet, my experience of God slips away and leaves me.
Hoping for another heavenly visit.
“We live in the shadowlands,” Jack grinned with yearning, “the sun is always shining somewhere else… around the bend in the road… over the brow of a hill.”
I go back to the Word, to prayer, to nature, to church, to family and friends, to my work — seeking the Lord Jesus.
We want God to show up in power and glory. We want to do great things for the Lord. But probably what we get is “bright shadows.” It’s “the sacramental ordinary.”
“Every bush (could we but perceive it) is a Burning Bush.” Lewis explains, “We may ignore, but we can nowhere evade, the presence of God. The world is crowded with Him. He walks everywhere incognito. And the incognito is not always hard to penetrate.”
“The real labor,” Jack urges us, “is to remember, to attend. In fact, to come awake. Still more to remain awake.”
Maybe then, we can hear God’s voice. Lewis describes this through Tirian’s experience in The Last Battle of Narnia:
Imagine a man in total darkness. He thinks he is in a cellar or dungeon.
Then, there comes a sound. He thinks it might be a sound from far off — waves or wind-blown trees or cattle half a mile away. And if so, it proves he’s not in a cellar, but free in the open air.
Or it may be a much smaller sound close at hand — a chuckle of laughter. And if so, there is a friend just beside him the dark.
Either way, a good, good sound.
We’re not alone. We’re in Narnia where “the nearness of God is my good” (Psalm 73:28, NASB).
(Reflections on the Psalms by C. S. Lewis, published by Harcourt Brace & Co in 1958/1986, pp. 45-46. Shadowlands, the play and movie on C. S. Lewis’ life and his late in life romance with Joy Gresham. All other quotes are from A Life Observed: A Spiritual Biography of C. S. Lewis by Devin Brown.)
(Appreciating and applying C. S. Lewis’ insights on leadership.)
We love hearing from you!
“Thank you for Soul Shepherding!
We are blessed because of your love for the Lord and His Word.”
Jane Kramer ~ Bible Study Leader
Mountain Bible Church ~ Payson, AZ