22 December 2009

Lions and Donkeys: Snow in Narnia

We got 18 inches of snow over the weekend.

A lovely gift on our 15th wedding anniversary.
All I wanted to do was stay home with my love and enjoy a cozy day. You can bet we weren't going anywhere when this was coming down, so I got exactly what I wanted.

Recently I finished the book, The Wisdom of Wilderness, by Gerald May. It's rare that a book intrigues and calls to me, yet constantly frustrates me all at the same time.
Much of May's words resonated with my spirit and kept me coming back for more. It's plain to me that both Gerald May and I are wired to respond to God in Creation. It's nice to have a compatriot.

But so many times May ascribed glory to something other than God. Or at least, some muddled version of God. I felt like he was leading me to the precipice of worship- where all I wanted to do was lean out over the edge and fall into the glory of the One True Creator, and yet this manufactured wind suddenly came up from below forcing me to teeter on my toes, stretching out over the edge, seeing clearly the wonder that was down there, but denying me the gravity to fall into that glory with all of my being.
Frustrating. Especially from a compatriot.

When a donkey is publicly paraded as a lion... and not just any lion... THE Lion... Aslan... well, the Narnian in me feels robbed. This so-called "lion" has a curious clip-clopping sound to its regal stride. It voices an odd braying when it commands its armies. It relies far too often on its monkey-of-an-adviser. This is a Puzzle-leader, hidden and mysterious behind smoke and disguises. And you want me to follow him? This is not the Aslan I've come to know and trust. As a Narnian, I smell a donkey.

Aslan will indeed come and reveal Himself. In a glorious way that puts all imposters and monkey-men to shame.

I'm waiting on May's precipice. Teetering on this wind that buoys my weight and teases my senses. I think I'm going to take that glorious fall, but no.
It wouldn't take much for May to just let me fall. (Which is my passionate desire. To fall.)

Just point me to Aslan. Just reveal him. Say his name.
Don't let the companionship falter now; not now that we've come this far together.

In the end, May never says it.
But I'm not really the one he needs to satisfy, am I?

For my part, I'll take my Narnian-self into those 18 inches of glorious snow. I will take Gerald May's companionship and learn from God in the wilderness. I know Who brought the snow and I know Who is teaching me with it.

No matter what anyone else says (or doesn't).

Further up and further in.

* Many thanks to Laura who hosted a group book discussion on High Calling Blogs. My faith walk has been enriched because of it.

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Blogger Sarah said...

LOVE this . . . I miss you when you're gone. Your thoughts make me wonder if I should bother reading May's book . . . it had been on my list. Thanks for sharing!!

1:42 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

Sarah, HI!!!! (How's that baby?)

I'm sorry for my very long absence. I know it can get lonely around here, but then again, I'm not really all that and a side of fries. Everybody's got stuff to do besides sit and wait for me to say something. ;) But I am glad you dropped by. Care for a Christmas cookie?

I actually would highly recommend May's book. There is so much food for thought contained in its pages. You may not agree with everything he says, or how he says it, but he never once lays his perspective out and calls it Gospel. You're free to disagree.

That's how I enjoyed the book- Gerald May and I are friends who agree to disagree.

Keep it on your reading list.

2:13 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Hey!! The baby is still inside, still growing. Jan 17th is her due date, so we'll see.

Life does get busy--I haven't blogged in ages!! But it's good to see you here now and again, side of fries or not ;)

Ok, ok, I'll keep May on the list. I know some of his other stuff is good--particularly his psychology/formation stuff, so I'll read him (eventually) if only to see how he brings that in to these topics.

Have a fabulous Christmas . . . further up and further in!

2:24 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

Gerald May can turn an excellent phrase, for sure. His word-smithery will be a pleasure to read, if nothing else.

Jan 17th! Keep me posted. :)

2:52 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

I remember finding that part of the Narnia story ludicrous as a girl. Yet, so many things in life parade as imposters for God, don't they? Thanks for this. It makes me remember, smile, and think a bit about where I am today.

7:09 PM  
Blogger Megan Willome said...

As a fellow Narnian nut, I love your thoughts!

11:27 AM  
Blogger Rhonda said...

I envy your snow! We left town a day early to avoid driving in that oncoming storm. I understood the urgency but was sad to miss seeing a snowfall. I have great memories from childhood snow days.

We did get snow out here in East Texas but, unlike Dallas, none stuck to the ground and it was miserable to stand outside and walk in it. The temperatures were blistery and the winds ferocious.

11:39 AM  
Blogger Monica Sharman said...

Oh, Happy Anniversary! Our 15th was this year, too (August)!

Thank you for these thoughts on the book. I think our experiences in reading it were very similar.

11:11 PM  

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