VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER
Faith Lessons in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
By Erin James
Contributing Writer, CBN.com Blogger
- Lessons are taught in many different ways. Just like we have diverse languages, some of us understand and retain information differently. Fantasy worlds and characters can become a huge part of our understanding of God’s messages to us.
The beauty of C.S. Lewis’ work is the allegorical message it conveys. The morals of his Chronicles of Narnia characters do not go unnoticed, and just as in our own spiritual battles good does inevitably trump evil.
The flight of the imagination is a gift from God. And our Creator loves for us to express our creativity and appreciate the imagination of others. Fantasy is a way to engage your children. It is a way to open their minds and eyes to different possibilities. God gave Lewis a gift to express His love and grace to others. The fantasy author took an idea and turned it into a way to reach children and adults alike for Christ.
Taking your creativity and putting it to work for God is one of the most fun and effective ways to bring others to Jesus. Even Jesus used creative stories that exemplified how we should act. He shared these parables with his followers and strangers to show them the ways of God.
God is the Great Creator. His creation is all around us, in us. We were formed in His image; therefore, He inspired in us the ability to create.
What is special about Aslan is his presence, whether he’s visibly seen or not. Regardless of his physical proximity, the children and Narnians know he is with them. Just like Christ shows himself to us in our darkest times, Aslan shows he is present and powerful to the people of Narnia when they open their eyes to him.
In Prince Caspian, the darker characters mocked those who believed in Aslan, saying that their king left them. Even in the face of ridicule, the believers didn’t lose faith.
Every time Aslan enters the story it brings about an existence of hope and renews their courage and strength in him. Sometimes we need that commanding vision in our walk with God.
It is clear that some are more open to seeing him than others. For instance, Lucy sees him the most. It’s often the same in our lives. It only takes one person to spread the news that God is with us. After he transforms back into a boy, Eustace tells the story of how Aslan spared him from being a dragon and guided him through his rebirth. It’s a complete turnaround from when his former remarks about Aslan. Before his transformation, the boy said he hated the name of ‘Aslan’. In a similar way, redeemed sinners grow to love the name of the Lord when once they hate His presence.
Aslan became Eustace’s savior in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. His is the one who made Eustace whole again. Similarly, God renews us constantly. When we fall away, He is right there to peel off the layers of worldly sin and show us the way out.
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader also can easily be seen as metaphor for our journeys to eternity with God. At the end of the book, when the water stops being bitter and salty and turns sweet, that is when they see the lamb. The children have completed their journey to Aslan.
He sends the children back to their world and tells them that they cannot return to Narnia. Desperate to experience Aslan again, Lucy and Edmund ask if he exists in their world. He replies, "I am... but there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there."
Just as Aslan wished to be in Lucy and Edmund’s lives, God wants this for us as well. Aslan guided Lucy and Edmund, and God wants to do the same, to guide us through journeys that prepare us for our futures.
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Erin James is the author of the CBN.com blog, "Mommy and the Joyful Three". She also writes for whattoexpect.com. A mother of three, her passion is to help moms and dads become positive parents.
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