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Monthly Archives: December 2016

My parents have an amazing engagement story. They were in different continents, it was an arranged marriage, there were multiple misunderstandings, and both said no to each other at some point. Needless to say, this is a common dinner party story and it’s hilarious (my dad maintains that he never said no – he just said he ‘had to think about it’ and my mom thinks that might be worse).

In the same way, there are some super cool conversion stories out there – those magical moments of ‘and THEN this happened’. Think Paul on the road to Damascus-style. Those are truly exciting – wow, how cool to be able to know that God chose you so clearly and monumentally.

Sometimes I get confused cause I don’t know when my conversion was. I know when I got baptised, when I came back to living a Christ-like life, etc. But there are still so many times when I fall and get ‘re-converted’. And sometimes I feel like this messes up the timeline. How do I tell people when I got converted, if more stuff keeps coming up and I realise I didn’t take it as seriously as I should’ve? Was I not converted? Was I ‘half-way converted’? What is the story?!

The answer is – it doesn’t matter. You can only see a teeeeny-tiny part of your ‘story’. Why would you think that you yourself are able to tell it in a bigger way? You have no idea how the story goes. But God does. So why not stop worrying about the broader meaning behind your timeline and your story and just focus on doing what He tells you to do today? That way we are pressing further up and further in – so we get more light, so we come to more perfection. That’s the true conversion – God wants to change our nature so we become more like Him. Time is nothing to Him – the timeline is irrelevant. He wants us to be focused on what His will is and not trying to fit our story onto a timeline we think we have control over.

Also relevant:

What That Means – Adam Ford

I went to watch a superhero movie today! I love the genre. The action, the witty repartee, the deep advice. The backstory, the conversion, the development, the trial, the dejection/rejection, the turning point, and the win in the end!

I wonder if that is similar to another Story.  And I’m certainly not the only one who’s done so.

When C. S. Lewis was on his journey to being converted, the process was through a discussion of myths. J. R. R. Tolkein drew Lewis’s attention to the fact that all myths have certain similar elements. Whether pagan or heroic, they had a semblance to Christianity.  He then demonstrated to Lewis that in fact, these myths were a reflection of Christianity.

The Gospel, according to converted Lewis and Tolkein, contained a fairy-story – which was true and historical. And what can other myths do but point to this True and Beautiful story – the Primary Story.

“I think that all things, in their way, reflect heavenly truth, the imagination not least.” – C. S. Lewis

What does this mean for us? It means that we can see God’s glory – His majestic story – displayed all around us. Rather than cause us to disbelieve God’s word because it is ‘just another fable’, we can realise that all other fables point to him – that everyone is in search for a ‘Savior’ – Someone to have been chosen, to go through a point at which He has given everything for us, and then, of course, to WIN. And this has happened!!

Incidentally, about 85 years after Tolkein and Lewis strolled on the grounds of Magdalen College, Oxford and had this discussion, I myself while at Oxford had to come to this point. An acquaintance was in disbelief that I could believe in God ‘because that’s like me believing in a little green monster under my bed’. I at the time had no response. (I mean…how rude?) But it led to my own development and my ability to now say that it’s True, so how can I not believe it? It’s Real, so how can I not shout it aloud? There is no other explanation for the redemption of mankind, no other story that is as complete, as perfect as this one. It is not insane, but rather Glorious, and Beautiful, and True.

SDG.

For a deeper explanation of the above, see:
The God of Men—and of Elves: Tolkien, Lewis, and Christian Mythology
The Conversion Story of C. S. Lewis
Three Objections to Fairy Tales and C. S. Lewis’s Response