from The Weight of Glory by C.S. Lewis
Posts Tagged ‘C.S. Lewis’
[God] has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
Great saints of God have beautifully, if feebly, attempted to capture the height and depth and weight of such a majestic verse as this. In his Confessions, Augustine wrote, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” Pascal’s oft-quoted words that people have a God-shaped vacuum in their hearts that only God can fill strike a similar note.
We do have a longing in our heart for eternity – or better – the God of eternity. Perhaps C.S. Lewis, in The Weight of Glory, best expressed this great desire of our hearts. He wrote:
In speaking of this desire for our own far-off country, which we find in ourselves even now, I feel a certain shyness… I am trying to rip open the inconsolable secret in each of one of you – the secret which hurts so much that you take your revenge on it by calling names like Nostalgia and Romanticism and Adolescence… We cannot tell it because it is a desire for something that has never actually appeared in our experience. We cannot hide it because our experience is constantly suggesting it, and we betray ourselves like lovers at the mention of a name.
…The books or music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust to them; it was not in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing. These things – the beauty, the memory of our own past – are good images of what we really desire, but if they are mistaken for the thing itself, they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshippers. For they are not the thing in itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have never yet visited.”
Eternity has been placed in our hearts by the King of eternity. Our longing is a homesickness of sorts. For though this is our Father’s world and was created good, it is now fallen. And when touched by the Holy Spirit we can no longer be content with the things of this world alone… things that are temporal and destined to fade away.
Perhaps some do not experience such a longing for their true homeland because their hearts and minds are not yet set on things above where Christ our King is seated. Perhaps the ravages of sin have so inflicted their hearts and minds that a shadow has veiled their sight. We can only pray that the same sovereign Spirit who touched us and re-created us will do the same for others.
In the end, there is no end, for we were created for eternity. We are pilgrims and aliens in a foreign land who long for the City of God, not built with human hands, but eternal in the heavens.
May the longing of our hearts for things unseen serve as our true north, that we might one day return Home.
Grace and Truth,
by C.S. Lewis
Something really new did happen at Bethlehem: not an interpretation but an event. God became Man. On the other hand there must be a sense in which God, being outside time, is changeless and nothing ever “happens” to him. I think I should reply that the event at Bethlehem was a novelty, a change to the maximum extent to which any event is a novelty or change: but that all time and all events in it, if we could see them all at once and fully understand them, are a definition or diagram of what God eternally is. But that is quite different from saying that the incarnation was simply an interpretation, or a change in our knowledge. When Pythagoras discovered that the square on the hypotenuse was equal to the sum of the squares on the other sides he was discovering what had been just as true the day before though no one knew it. But in 50 B.C. the proposition “God is Man” would not have been true in the same sense in which it was true in 10 A.D. because tho’ the union of God and Man in Christ is a timeless fact, in 50 B.C. we hadn’t yet got to that bit of time which defines it.
Posted in C.S. Lewis, Dale Tedder, Sanctification, Spiritual Formation, Uncategorized, tagged C.S. Lewis, Dale Tedder, Letters, Sanctification, Spiritual Growth, Spiritul Formation on November 25, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
I have said often that I am a big fan of C.S. Lewis. That’s not exactly a daring thing to say since many people claim that same status. His books, of course, are brilliant, creative, inspiring, humorous, God-centered, and often bewildering as well as challenging. They are what draw so many to learn more about Lewis. The never-ending stream of biographies on Lewis is overwhelming in sheer numbers, but are fascinating and must-reads for those who want to discover more about Lewis.
Several years ago I purchased the three volume set of the letters of Lewis, edited by Walter Hooper. A great review of the third and final volume, by Michael Ward, came out a couple of years ago in Books and Culture. It’s a very positive review and will give you a good idea of what you can expect, should you decide to buy one of these volumes. (Click here to read the review of Volume 3.) (Click here to read Ward’s review of the first two volumes.)
Reading the mail of the great saints has been invogorating to my own faith. Whether it’s the journals of Wesley and Whitefield or the letters of folks such as Lewis, Tolkien, Lloyd-Jones, and Calvin, just to name a few, reading the hearts and minds of these men on paper is inspiring, encouraging, and instructive.
I would encourage you to pick up one of these volumes of Lewis and read one or two of his letters during your devotional time. It will add a little spice to your time with God.
with Douglas Wilson
Joined with those at night, who set apart this day as a day of fasting and humiliation, to deprecate the judgements our national sins deserve. Lord, hear our prayers, and let our cry come unto Thee.
Happy the man who serves God in his health, and has nothing to do when sickness seizes him, but quietly to lie down and die.
Monroe Hatch (Monroe served our church as pastor, retired pastor, and pastor emeritus for many years)
Help us to give our hearts to you that we may so love you that we may seek nothing but to please you, and fear nothing but to fail to be your child. In Christ’s name. Amen.
Let your eyes look straight ahead,
fix your gaze directly before you.
 Make level paths for your feet
and take only ways that are firm.
 Do not swerve to the right or the left;
keep your foot from evil.
“Behold, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind.
 But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy.
 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more.
Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,  and whoever wants to be first must be your slave–  just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.”
Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what he is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is he up to? The explanation is that he is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but he is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it himself.
I’m a big fan of C.S. Lewis. I find myself fascinated by virtually everything the man wrote, whether fiction or non-fiction. I’ve also loved the biographies I’ve read about him. What an interesting life.
I wholeheartedly offer the following website link in hopes that you’ll check it out and learn more about Lewis and the great things the C.S. Lewis Foundation is doing.
The following is from their welcome page.
From its very inception until now, the C.S. Lewis Foundation has been devoted to one primary mission: namely that of enabling a genuine renaissance of Christian scholarship and artistic expression within the mainstream of the contemporary university.
Why the university? Because we believe it is the primary force in the shaping of modern culture. In the words of Dr. Charles Malik, philosopher and former President of the U.N. General Assembly, “Change the university and you can change the world!”
There are, of course, many ways in which one might wish to “change the university.” There are, however, two primary changes that the C.S. Lewis Foundation is working to bring about: 1. The attainment of a more genuine open forum for ideas that are grounded in Christian understanding; and 2. The emergence of an identifiable, although certainly not homogeneous, body of Christian scholarly and artistic work that would more truly and powerfully resonate within the curricular life of our colleges and universities.
But changing the university takes time and requires a great deal of patience. C.S. Lewis took note of this fact, observing that it required a full generation: “The schoolmasters of today were the undergraduates of twenty years ago.” He observed that “delayed results” were the norm within the “mental world,” where powerful ideas registered their impact much like intellectual “time bombs,” long after they had been planted (God in the Dock, p. 116). Indeed, most of the twentieth century’s greatest social and intellectual follies are evidence of just that, and with the gravest consequences for the world at large.
We believe God would have us chip away, Hobbit-like, in an effort to cultivate the soil and plant new seed within these strategic environments where spiritual aridity has reigned for more than a century. As you read of the various Foundation projects underway, please do remember us in prayer and give a thought as to how you might get involved. We can’t do this alone. Believe it or not, you can make a difference!
Dr. J. Stanley Mattson
President, C. S. Lewis Foundation
Click here to visit the website and learn more about what these good folks are doing. Lots of exciting things happening.
Posted in Books, Children, Covenant Home, Dale's Devotional, Dale's Writing, Discipleship, Family, Family Worship, Fatherhood, Generational Vision, Parenting, Reading, Redeeming the Time, Renovate Your Life, Spiritual Direction, Spiritual Formation, What I'm Reading, tagged C.S. Lewis, Children, Christianity Today, Covenant Home, Discipleship, Family, Family Worship, Fatherhood, Generational Vision, Parenting, Reading, Redeeming the Time, Renovate Your Life, Spiritual Direction, Spiritual Formation, Voyage of the Dawn Treader on March 8, 2010 | 2 Comments »
I was greatly encouraged last week when I read Christianity Today’s “pre-review” of Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I was heartened first of all because the folks who attended a special screening of the movie were trustworthy folk who love Christ and deeply appreciate C.S. Lewis and desire that the movies be faithful to his books. Second, it was encouraging to read that many of them thought that the new director had done a much better job than the previous two movies in keeping with the central ideas and themes of the books.
I enjoyed the movie version of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. However, I was completely disappointed with Prince Caspian. A real let-down. I’m not an extreme C.S. Lewis purist, but I thought that the “Aslan-free” movie fell woefully short. I love the Lord of the Rings movies, but had not first read the books. Perhaps I felt like many Tolkien purists who didn’t like some of the choices Peter Jackson made. At any rate, many of the folks who attended this special screening were positive and even enthusiastic about what they saw and experienced. I’m glad for that.
Therefore, I told my kids that we would read Voyage of the Dawn Treader together so that we would be ready to see the movie when it comes out on December 10, 2010. I’ve read through the Chronicles with my oldest two, but Jake was still a baby when I read them the first time around, and Grant was not even born yet. I chronicled some of those efforts here. We read the first chapter last night with all in attendance and, aside from Grant dancing a jig here and there, it was wonderful to be back with Edmund, Lucy, Caspian, and even Eustace. We tackle Chapter Two tonight.
I would encourage those of you with children to read through Voyage of the Dawn Treader before it comes out in December (which means you have plenty of time). I’ve come to learn that in the mind of many, this book is the most theological of the Chronicles. Reading it with your children will not only prepare you and your children to see the movie, but will also give you the marvelous opportunity to disciple your children as you discuss the different themes and ideas. I love building my relationship with my children through reading to and with them. And, I love the stories every bit as much as they do.