Fellowship of the King
By Hannah Goodwyn
C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, best friends in this world, created fantastical tales illustrating the power of relationships. One of the most famous of Tolkien's stories is that of hobbits Frodo and Sam in his Lord of the Rings series. Their story paints a vivid picture of the strength and comfort one can find in the fellowship of a good friend.
In the first installment, The Fellowship of the Ring, four hobbits are thrust from their comfortable lives by circumstances beyond their control. Frodo Baggins is burdened with saving his world from an evil that is growing stronger in the East. His adventure begins with a company of nine, including his hobbit friends Sam, Merry, and Pippin, warrior Boromir, Legolas, an elf with a keen sense of approaching danger, brave Aragorn, the wizard Gandalf, and Gimli, a proud dwarf.
At first, this group of strangers is divided on how to save Middle Earth. Lord Elrond calls the meeting to debate what they should do with the evil ring. Some want to use its power for their purposes. Others realize it's deceptive and will consume its bearer with pride. Disunity seeps into their midst, feeding the evil among them.
Frodo volunteers to place the fate of Middle Earth upon himself inspiring the rest to quit their squabbling. His willingness compels them to help with this great task. They are his protection as he fulfills his destiny – to caste the ring into the fiery lake at Mount Doom.
A Small Company of Friends
Remember in the scene how Frodo disregards Boromir's hopeless argument. This hobbit's faith doesn't require 10,000 armed men to protect him in his journey. All he needs is a few loyal ones to join him.
Jesus acted in a similar manner. It was not His plan to empower and equip an army thousands strong to take the world by force. He surrounded himself with 12 faithful men. These are the ones who spread God's message of love and forgiveness. They stood together, unified in their cause for Christ. Two thousand years later, we benefit from their strength and courage.
Without his companions, Frodo's trip would have been significantly cut short. The future would not be what it became without him and his "band of brothers". Their sacrifice lifted some of the burden off of Frodo's shoulders, giving him strength to keep going even as the evil ring he carried grew heavier.
Bearing Each Other's Burdens
The terrain Frodo has to travel is tough. He often wants to give up. But, he doesn't stop because his friends encourage him along the way.
We all struggle. But, God gives us His strength and peace to overcome. The comfort of a close friend also offers a special measure to muscle through any barrier.
Another important scene in this movie is when Frodo is dying. A deep cut threatens his life and his friends must carry him to safety. It's beautiful to watch as Arwen, an elf, holds him as she rides away from a danger that is hunting them.
[Watch this scene from Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring -- 'The Flight to the Ford'.]
The fate of their world is tied to Frodo's success in destroying the ring. So by stepping in, Arwen helps to carry his burden.
Her gentle care for Frodo reminds me of our need to lift fellow believers in prayer. When our brother or sister in Christ is in need, we must help them bear the burden (Galatians 6:2). Through our intercession, we show our love for one another.
In this scene, Arwen protects Frodo when he's at his weakest moment. When he begins to fade, she calls on a power beyond her own in her Elvish tongue to rescue them from certain death. After the danger is gone, she cries for Frodo's life to be spared. Her plea is the level of compassion we Christians should have for each other.
She prayerfully whispers, "What Grace has given me, let it pass to him! Let him be spared!"
Her life is of no consequence at that moment. All that she prayed was focused toward the healing of her friend. She interceded for Frodo, and saved his life.
We all must trudge through the mucky waters of our seemingly dismal lives. But we don't have do face it alone. With God's help and the compassion of friends, we too can overcome any darkness that reveals itself in our lives.
Hannah Goodwyn serves as the Family and Entertainment producer for CBN.com. She also writes for these sites. For more articles and info, visit Hannah's bio page.
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