by Christine Sine
This year I decided to use Advent in Narnia by Heidi Haverkamp as my Advent devotional. Yesterday I took a sneak preview – and was riveted by this quote from the introduction.
Lewis by placing Christianity into another world makes it unfamiliar again. He gives us the chance to feel newfound wonder at the depth of God’s love, the power of Christ’s grace and the totality of his sacrifice, and the wonder of a world infused with the Holy Spirit.
MAKE CHRISTIANITY UNFAMILIAR AGAIN – what wonderful words to prepare us for Advent and the Christmas season. All of us need to be awakened to the wonder of Christmas and experience it as though it were the first time. What would it take to make that happen? Perhaps as I suggest in The Gift of Wonder it will mean that we need to look at the story with the wide eyed wonder of a child again.
“Learn this well: Unless you dramatically change your way of thinking and become teachable, and learn about heaven’s kingdom realm with the wide-eyed wonder of a child, you will never be able to enter in. (Matthew 18:3 The Passion Translation)
How would a child view the the story of Jesus’ birth? Would they gasp in awe at Mary’s acceptance of the calling God gives her – to conceive out of wedlock in a society that stoned unwed mothers? Would they dance for joy at Joseph’s embrace of her in spite of the stigma. Would they eagerly welcome not only Mary, Joseph and Jesus into their home but also the despised shepherds and the unacceptable foreigners? And what about that flight into Egypt? Refugees rarely travel alone. I wonder was the whole family forced to flee in fear that other children too would be killed? Or maybe just to support their family members? Would those left behind live in fear of retribution? Were their eyes open to fear as well as wonder?
These are some of the questions that are revolving in my mind today and when I shared it with my husband he said “Well that is what the Gift of Wonder is about isn’t it?
The Gift of Wonder is all about seeing from a new perspective and learning to see with the wide eyed wonder of a child, just as Lucy’s experience of Narnia is. As I comment in the introduction I felt like Narnia’s Lucy stepping through a magical doorway of awe and wonder. And it is helping me to see the whole story of Christmas with new, child-like eyes. I hope that you will join me. So I must confess that I expect to have two books open as I move through Advent this year – Advent in Narnia and The Gift of Wonder.
To help with this process I am working on a new Gift of Wonder Bonus Download that I hope will be available by the end of the week (prayers appreciated!) It has been a little delayed by my trip to Australia but that is all to the good as I spent a lot of time with babies and have watched their wide eyed wonder in all they see around them. My hope is that this will provide four practices for the season – 2 drawn from The Gift of Wonder but embellished with the ideas that I have explored in the last six months since I published it, and 2 new practices drawn from questions and ideas that have been suggested since then.
I think that we all need to make Christmas unfamiliar again and to do that we need new practices that help derail our accepted way of looking at the story. I hope that you will join me on this exciting journey and rediscover as Heidi Haverkamp suggests “the newfound wonder of God’s love”
NOTE: As an Amazon Affiliate I receive a small amount for purchases made through appropriate links. Thank you for supporting Godspace in this way.