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Day 7

Day 7

Author: Emilie Schimmel
June 16, 2020

 

Romans 8:37-39
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[k] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

Well…I may have other words to describe 2020, but today I will suggest the word adventure. If you look up the definition of adventure, it means “an unusual and exciting, typically hazardous, experience or activity.” I may be inclined to take out the word exciting of our 2020 experience, as if saying that is to assume a joyful type of excitement. Not so much. My personal experience is that this year has been hard. And it feels really clear that much of our worldly experiences have been both unusual and hazardous. Like it our not, this has been a defining time in history, for the whole world. Stories of 2020 will be written for years to come. Epic might be another word for it.

That seems, in some ways, okay. Uncomfortable, but okay. We were made for adventure. We often speak of the epic story of God’s love found in the Bible is similar ways. It is this narrative that draws us into our own existence, our purpose, and our redemption, because of God’s existence, His purpose, and His redemption. Adventure cannot be fabricated, though I think we can seek it out, and sometimes do.

During our COVID-19 shelter-in-place, I began reading the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis with my six-year-old son. He is beginning to embrace all types of adventure stories. Those that include battles between good and evil. Superheroes, Star Wars, Ninjas…these are the books and films he is asking to read and watch. He is, however, very sensitive and emotional. I sometimes hesitate to share or show all of the details; they might be startling for him to observe and comprehend. Fighting evil is messy work. Sometimes it is downright terrifying. He often looks for reassurance as we are about to witness a battle, and he asks “Mom, what’s going to happen?” I remind him this simple truth: “Remember Buddy, good always wins.” We’ve discussed that our assurance is found in Jesus Christ. He has defeated death in the most epic of victories. And no matter what manifestation of evil we see in our broken world, our literature, and our entertainment, good always wins because that reality is firm and secure. It is not up for debate.

I came across this exchange in the fourth of the Narnia books, Prince Caspian, when the Kings and Queens of Old return to Narnia. To the Pevensie children, it had only been a year since their previous reign in Narnia, to Narnia it had been perhaps a thousand years’ time. When originally created, the world of Narnia was a beautiful world with talking animals and spirits, a diverse and interesting unity of different persons and voices. These created beings were peaceful and purposeful. When Peter, Edmund, Susan, and Lucy are called back to Narnia to help right generations of wrongful leadership, much has changed. Most of the animals had gone from being talking tame animals to wild animals. After a scary encounter with an attacking bear, the sisters began a dialogue that captivated me.

Lucy: “Such a horrible idea has come into my head, Su.”

Susan: “What’s that?”

Lucy: “Wouldn’t it be dreadful if some day in our own world, at home, men started going wild inside, like the animals here, and still looked like men, so that you’d never know which was which?”

Susan brushes off the idea as impractical. But I had a bit of an uneasy feeling as a reader. Can you imagine?

Thankfully, men going “wild” with animal-like impulses was not the ending of Prince Caspian. The animals and spirits of Old Narnia experienced their rightful honor restored under rightful Kingship. Oh, how I’m rooting for that bigger victory among us as well.

I am so thankful for the Holy Spirit who is alive and active in the lives of those who follow King Jesus, so that His redeeming work continues. The Spirit does not leave us as we are. Our sin nature, though present, is captivated by Christ’s promises and power. I am thankful that good always wins, and despite the many ways we witness evil, men cannot all go back to being wild. In Christ…no way.

So, if I am to become wild, then let me be wild with love.

 

Prayer

 

Lord, we thank you that our assurance is in Jesus, the victory of the cross, and Your kingdom come to Earth. We are participating in Your redeeming work today, even still. In our own Narnia. Lord, it is time to right wrongs done to people of color and marginalized communities for generations. Please also lead us to unreservedly protect the most vulnerable among the sick and suffering as COVID-19 continues. And challenge us to even perhaps sacrifice of ourselves and our resources with joyful excitement, the way TRUE adventure calls us to. Amen.

 

Emilie Schimmel


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