19 September 2012

How Jesus Deals With Us

In chapter 11 of Prince Caspian--perhaps my favorite book, though I feel that way about whatever volume on Narnia I'm currently reading--Lucy twice sees Aslan while the others, her three siblings and the dwarf Trumpkin, disbelieve her. She finally convinces them to follow her. Edmund supports her more than anyone, while Susan is (as Lewis would say) perfectly beastly to her. As far as Trumpkin is concerned, talking lions are a ridiculous fairy tale.

The party nevertheless follows Lucy, who in turn follows Aslan and is the only one who can see him. Eventually the lion turns around.
Aslan had stopped and turned and stood facing them, looking so majestic that they felt as glad as anyone can who feels afraid, and as afraid as anyone can who feels glad. The boys strode forward: Lucy made way for them: Susan and the Dwarf shrank back.

"Oh, Aslan," said King Peter, dropping on one knee and raising the Lion's heavy paw to his face, "I'm so glad. And I'm so sorry. I've been leading them wrong ever since we started and especially yesterday morning."

"My dear son," said Aslan.

Then he turned and welcomed Edmund. "Well done," were his words.

Then, after an awful pause, the deep voice said, "Susan." Susan made no answer but the others thought she was crying. "You have listened to fears, child," said Aslan. "Come, let me breathe on you. Forget them. Are you brave again?"

"A little, Aslan," said Susan.

"And now!" said Aslan in a much louder voice with just a hint of roar in it, while his tail lashed his flanks. "And now, where is this little Dwarf, this famous swordsman and archer, who doesn't believe in lions? Come here, son of Earth, come HERE!"--and the last word was no longer the hint of a roar but almost the real thing.

"Wraiths and wreckage!" gasped Trumpkin in the ghost of a voice. The children, who knew Aslan well enough to see that he liked the Dwarf very much, were not disturbed; but it was quite another thing for Trumpkin, who had never seen a lion before, let alone this Lion. He did the only sensible thing he could have done; that is, instead of bolting, he tottered towards Aslan.

Aslan pounced. Have you ever seen a very young kitten being carried in the mother cat's mouth? It was like that. The Dwarf, hunched up in a little, miserable ball, hung from Aslan's mouth. The Lion gave him one shake and all his armour rattled like a tinker's pack and then--hey-presto--the Dwarf flew up in the air. He was as safe as if he had been in bed, though he did not feel so. As he came down the huge velvety paws caught him as gently as a mother's arms and set him (right way up, too) on the ground.

"Son of Earth, shall we be friends?" asked Aslan.

"Ye--he--he--hes," panted the Dwarf, for it had not yet got its breath back.


Luma Simms said...

"You have listened to fears, child," said Aslan. "Come, let me breathe on you. Forget them. Are you brave again?"


rockingwithhawking said...

Thanks for this! My favorite of the Narnia books (and perhaps of all of C.S. Lewis' books) has always been The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.