Sacred Spaces 316– It’s the end of the world (as we know it.)
28 November 2011
One of the reasons I chose the job offer at Bicester Methodist was the proximity to the Eagle and Child pub in Oxford. There is where CS Lewis and other writers met to share their writing ideas. Being an aspiring writer… this was a big draw card.
So that was me BEGINNING here.
Then this past Friday, my friend, Chris took me out to Headington Quarry (Oxford) to see CS Lewis’ grave.
It was moving to see the grave.
I even vlogged about it: Visit to CS Lewis grave
(Look here if you have FACEBOOK)
Seeing this grave just before I leave for SA (home), seems to be my ENDING.
(Hence the title of this week’s SS.)
I hope I have ended well, here.
HOWEVER the more IMPORTANT question to ask is how well we each live, between:
The beginning and the end
I think for me, what is really moving about CS Lewis and his writings, is reading his biography and knowing that he had a tough life. Things were difficult. He lost his parents at a young age. Hardship was a companion in his life. YET, he still wrote such profound things. And through his writings, I know a lot of people have met Jesus.
This verse comes to mind, despite all the bad times he endured: “And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8: 28)
Even with his hard life, God used his written words to touch lives.
I thought I’d share some of his quotes. So this Sacred Space is not entirely original, JUST passing on a message… let his (CS Lewis) words inspire and move you. Don’t rush through them, chew on them. Let them challenge you and open your heart:
1) “I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” C.S. Lewis
2) “To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.” C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
3) “If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.” C.S. Lewis
4) “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.” C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
5) “I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time- waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God- it changes me.” C.S. Lewis
6) “Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” C.S. Lewis
7) “I didn’t go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of Port would do that. If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don’t recommend Christianity.” C.S. Lewis
And my favourite quote of his is from the book: The Horse and his boy (Chronicles of Narnia):
8) [Aslan to Shasta toward the end of the book] “There was only one lion … I was the lion … who forced you to join Aravis. I was the cat who comforted you among the houses of the dead. I was the lion who drove the jackals from you while you slept. I was the lion who gave the horses the new strength of fear for the last mile so that you should reach King Lune in time. And I was the lion you do not remember who pushed the boat in which you lay, a child near death, so that it came to shore where a man sat, wakeful at midnight, to receive you.”
[To Shasta when he questions Aslan and asks for an explanation for Aravis’ story] “Child,” said the Voice, “I am telling you your story, not hers. I tell no one any story but his own.”
Reason, why I like this one so much, especially when Shasta complains that some things seem “unfair or hurtful” actions in the life of Aravis. HOWEVER, Aslan replies (and God says to us today)… you don’t understand because it’s not your story. So in another way, I guess (with tongue in cheek), we could say: “Mind your own business”
The worst thing for us to do in our following of Jesus is to “compare” our lives to others.
So often that will bring us down.
Jesus, the author is writing individual chapters for each of us as individuals.
If HE is the author of our story, will we “drop the pen” and let HIM lead us?
Surrendering control (as scary as that sounds) is essential to true life!
“For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.”
(Matthew 16: 25)
You gotta love the “upside down” kingdom. It’s so attractive to me. I want in, on that!
I feel as I write this; I need to share this scripture with someone who may read up to here:
“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. 12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.” (2 Corinthians 4: 7 – 12)
I pray this falls on the right ears and heart. 🙂