Church of England · Churches Together in Britain · Felixstowe · Lent · Narnia · Sermon

Of Mice & Marshwiggles – Day 16 – Aslan

Of Mice & Marshwiggles – Day 16 – Aslan

 

To Read:

Setting the Scene:   The meeting between Bree, Aravis and Hwin and Aslan continues.

……Then Hwin, though shaking all over, gave a strange little neigh, and trotted across to the Lion.  

‘Please,’ she said, ‘you’re so beautiful. You may eat me if you like. I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else.’  

‘Dearest daughter,’ said Aslan, planting a lion’s kiss on her twitching, velvet nose, ‘I knew you would not be long in coming to me. Joy shall be yours.’  

Then he lifted his head and spoke in a louder voice.

‘Now, Bree,’ he said, ‘you poor, proud frightened Horse, draw near. Nearer still, my son. Do not dare not to dare. Touch me. Smell me. Here are my paws, here is my tail, these are my whiskers. I am a true Beast.’  

‘Aslan,’ said Bree in a shaken voice, ‘I’m afraid I must be rather a fool.’  

‘Happy the Horse who knows that while he is still young. Or the Human either. Draw near, Aravis my daughter. See! My paws are velveted. You will not be torn this time.’

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‘This time, sir?’ said Aravis.  

‘It was I who wounded you,’ said Aslan. ‘I am the only lion you met in all your journeyings. Do you know why I tore you?’  

‘No, sir.’  

‘The scratches on your back, tear for tear, throb for throb, blood for blood, were equal to the stripes laid on the back of your stepmother’s slave because of the drugged sleep you cast upon her. You needed to know what it felt like.’  

‘Yes, sir. Please-’

‘Ask on, my dear,’ said Aslan.  

‘Will any more harm come to her by what I did?’  

‘Child,’ said the Lion, ‘I am telling you your story, not hers. No one is told any story but their own.’ Then he shook his head and spoke in a lighter voice.  

‘Be merry, little ones,’ he said. ‘We shall meet soon again. But before that you will have another visitor.’ Then in one bound he reached the top of the wall and vanished from their sight.  

Strange to say, they felt no inclination to talk to one another about him after he had gone. They all moved slowly away to different parts of the quiet grass and there paced to and fro, each alone, thinking.  

The Horse and His Boy – Chapter 14 – How Bree Became a Wiser Horse (© C.S. Lewis)

To Reflect:

In ‘The Horse and His Boy’ Hwin, not the Horse of the title, does not get to say too much but what she does say is rich and profound. I can never read her first words to Aslan without my heart melting and experiencing a deep longing to have such a simple, profound and complete faith.

‘Please,’ she said, ‘you’re so beautiful. You may eat me if you like. I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else.’

From someone who has only just met Aslan this is an incredible statement. Hwin sees in an instant the whole glory of Aslan and hands herself over to him completely – even though her experience of Aslan is as sketchy and incomplete as that of Bree.

Hwin teaches me to lose myself in the beauty of God and realise that besides God’s love there is nothing. No argument, no self-justification, no delay, just a total self abandonment to the One who loves me best. Too often I find myself to be more like Bree or Aravis. Either arguing away the existence (and so influence on my life) of God or using others to achieve my ends.

And so other people suffer because I refuse to give myself away completely. When I am like Bree they do not get to hear the full Gospel but instead receive some watered down powerless gospel which is full only of the rumour of God. When I am like Aravis other people suffer because of my desire to exercise my freedom and go on my journey and follow my own way.

I need to be consumed by God, unless I am I will end up consuming others.

To Pray:

Lord God, I am no longer my own, but yours.
Put me to what you will,
rank me with whom you will.
Put me to doing, put me to enduring;
let me be employed for you,
or laid aside for you,
exalted for you
or brought low for you;
Let me be full, let me be empty;
let me have all things,
let me have nothing.
I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things
to your pleasure and disposal.
And now, glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
you are mine and I am yours.
So be it.

John Wesley

In ‘The Book of a Thousand Prayers’ © Angela Ashwin – Compiler

 

 

To Do:

When next you receive communion make it a moment of being consumed by God.

Make amends to someone whom you have used to get your own way.

Write out one of the Creeds of the Christian faith.

© Andrew Dotchin 2018

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