Our theme for October is “Why I Believe.”
“Then Hwin, though shaking all over, gave a strange little neigh and trotted across to the Lion.
“Please,” she said, “you’re so beautiful. You may eat me if you like. I’d sooner be eaten by you than fed by anyone else.”
I believe in Aslan.
I believe in a lion who thaws 100-year winters. I believe in a lion who breathes statues to flesh. I believe in a lion who heals dragons, defeats witches, and sings worlds into bloom.
I believe in Aslan because he cannot be bought, he cannot be misguided, and he cannot be deterred.
I believe in Aslan because he is magnificent. He is beautiful, he is handsome, he is a beast of majesty. He is the lion who grows in size and strength when Lucy and Edmund grow in size and knowledge. He is golden, he is light, he is the radiance of spring, the joy of summer, the wisdom of autumn, and the contemplation of winter. Above all, I believe he is good.
I believe in Aslan because he is terrifying. Like Hwin, I fear the tangible wildness of his presence. He has inscrutable reasons but I fear him because he sees and knows everything and yet allows Edmund to be seduced by love for Turkish Delight.
The scent of otherness that places him beyond anyone’s power to beguile, charm,or hoodwink.Unlike the White Witch who covets control, the Tisroc who wades in wealth, or Shift who gambles in greed, Aslan has no vice. He is the son of the emperor over the sea. He is true royalty and yet is not proud to be humbled to the jagged edge of a knife. Narnia is his to make, control, or destroy as he will and yet he crowns humans to rule. Humans who have already proven their weakness prone towards betrayal. How can that judgment not inspire fear? Yet, how can I resist the draw of a lion who is on the frontline of battling evil? How can I deny the goodness of a lion-king who gives up his crown to be a witch’s ritual?
I am as control-hungry, wealth-lusting, and greed-seeking as every antagonist in Narnia. I am worse because I am not fictional. I fear Aslan because he loves me regardless. I fear Aslan because he knows I betrayed him before my first taste of Turkish Delight.
I believe in a Lion unashamed to be sacrificed as a lamb, even for betrayers.
And why shouldn’t I? After all, he’s not a tame lion.
Rebekah (’12) teaches English as a second language at Grand Rapids Community College. She does not drink coffee nor purchase Apple products.