|Photo by Davemc500hats|
I received my first copy of The Chronicles of Narnia when I was eight years old. The black cover held a stunning gold lion, who lived in the embossed cover, and while staring at its eyes I knew that The Chronicles of Narnia was going to be memorable.
Looking back on those Narnian hours, I can now say that, outside of scripture, Narnia was the first place I had discovered God within literature. Beginning with The Magician's Nephew I found a creation story; moving to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe I found the atonement and resurrection. The Last Battle is eschatology in a children's story, and the allegories continue.
As a child, these allegorical connections were thrilling and enchanting. I felt I had discovered a secret tale of a bygone land, woven with truths that must make God real. So I kept reading. To my young self, reading became the chance to unlock ideas and unseen realities that helped me understand the abstraction of divinity and the dichotomy of good and evil. When placed within the fantastic realm of lions, children, fauns, and witches, my faith became simple: God was real because if he wasn't then we couldn't have stories like The Chronicles of Narnia.
And Aslan is just one example of how literature can help us come to know God. As Edmund asked, "Are-are you there too, Sir?" said Edmund.
"I am," said Aslan. "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."
How lucky that I discovered God in Narnia because it is true—by knowing Aslan there, I came to know God better here.