Being comfortable is nice, right? After a long day at college, there’s nothing I like better than snuggling down into my cosy bed and watching a film. As I settled to watch Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe this week I wasn’t quite ready for how God was going to reveal Himself and give me a much needed, uncomfortable shake up.
For those of you who don’t know the story here’s a nutshell summary; 4 siblings, Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy, find a magical place called Narnia in the back of a wardrobe. As it turns out they are there to fulfil a prophesy and save Narnia from the White Witch, current evil Queen of Narnia. Edmund betrays his siblings in favour of some Turkish Delight and gets kidnapped by the Queen. In Narnia, law states that anyone convicted of betrayal is subject to punishment by death. However, instead of the Queen killing Edmund, Aslan the Lion steps in and offers himself up as a sacrifice.
Throughout the film I had a number of uneasy realisations…
The childishness of our sin
In the face of temptation, Edmund practically gives up his own life, the lives of his family and the lives of a number of woodland creatures in one fell swoop… all for some Turkish Delight? Our own sin can so often be like this, we are childishly tempted by the world’s novelties and our self control is weak. Through this we completely expose our hearts to sin, turning them away from God.
Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.
The humiliation and exploitation of the crucifixion
As I watched the Witch’s army jeer and poke at Aslan, bind him, fiercely shave off his impressive mane and drag him up to the stone table- it hit home. I felt such raw grief and pain for Aslan to the point I was welling up (and I’m not one to cry at films!) The moment forced me to take a look back at myself; if I feel this cocktail of emotion for fictional Aslan, how has it become that this same image of Jesus, brutally sacrificing himself for my sins has become so stale to me?
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
We are in a battle for Jesus
With Aslan gone, so begins the preparations for a war. As they stand ready to fight, Peter sees the enemy is far, far bigger than them. But, to quote the film ‘Numbers don’t win battles’. When we stand on the front line, as Christians in a fallen world, we are completely outnumbered. Peter probably had doubts at this point and yet he jumps head first into battle- he is fighting with everything he has for what Aslan has done for him. Wars aren’t won by number, but they are won in heart. How many people do we see in churches that are just comfortable spectators? And how many who are willing to put their lives on the line and give everything? In Christ we have so much to fight for, and by getting too comfortable are we missing out on the real joys to be found in the battle?
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.
1 Timothy 6:12
137 minutes later and I’m not feeling so comfortable any more. In fact, being comfortable feels like an almost dangerous place to be. Somewhere that I leave my heart open to sinful abuse, ignoring the fact Jesus gave up His life for me and wimping out on an incredible chance to share Gods humbling grace with others.
My advice? Plead with God to shake you up, to fill you with a passion and a love for Him that can’t be ignored and then brandish Jesus’ cross in the fight of faith.
(And if I wasn’t convincing enough to get you to watch this, then Peter rides a unicorn in the film and who doesn’t want to see that?)
Hi, I’m Katrina. I’m in my last year at Hills Road Sixth Form College, Cambridge and in the process of applying to study sport at uni. I love rowing, autumn and spend a copious amount of time baking. I’ve spent the last year learning on the job at being a CU leader but have loved every minute of it and am so excited by seeing God’s grace in action.