Archive for the ‘C.S. Lewis’ Tag

We Are Far Too Easily Pleased…

A couple of Sundays ago our church sang “Jesus, I Am Resting“.

I just love the words to that old song. The song writer captures the essence of what it means to trust/rest in Christ:

Simply trusting Thee Lord Jesus
I behold Thee as Thou art
And Thy love so pure so changeless
Satisfies my heart
Satisfies its deepest longings
Meets supplies its every need

My prayer partner from college is a missionary in the Philippines and he ends each of his ministry update letters with the words, “Satisfied in Him.” That is what it means to rest in Christ – to find in him our only satisfaction – to His glory. As Pastor John Piper puts it, “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.”

The Bible has a word for when we go to anything other than Christ to find our deepest satisfaction – it’s called idolatry. I was very convicted recently of the many things in my life that have become idols. There are about a million things that compete for our desire to be satisfied. When we find our deepest satisfaction in knowing Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his suffering, then we have been freed from idolatry and are trusting/resting in him and all that he is and it is then that he is “most glorified in us.”

For many, the Christian life seems to be a bunch of people trying so hard to suppress their desires for “satisfaction”. C.S. Lewis said that the problem is NOT that our desires are too strong – causing us to search endlessly for satisfaction wherever it can be found. NO! The problem is that our desires are too weak and we have learned to become satisfied with far lesser things (cheeseburgers, fine wine, good sex, advancing careers, big screen TV’s). These things are not bad in themselves. In fact our Creator would have us enjoy these things as gifts. The problem is that there is something wrong with us and we take these things that were intended for our enjoyment and we use them for purposes they were not intended. Our eyes beheld the gifts and we became far too easily taken with them instead of looking to the one who gave us those gifts and then resting in Him alone.

C.S. Lewis wrote in The Weight of Glory, “Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

Don’t be “far too easily pleased.” Find your rest and satisfaction in Christ alone.

He is not safe!

This past week I heard a sermon that reminded me of this excerpt from C.S. Lewis’s The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  Mr. Beaver tells the children that he is going to take them to see Aslan and Lucy asks if Aslan is a man.

“Aslan a man!” said Mr. Beaver sternly.  “Certainly not.  I tell you he is the King of the wood and the son of the great Emperor-beyond-the-Sea.  Don’t you know who is the King of Beasts?  Aslan is a lion – the Lion, the great Lion.”

“Ooh!” said Susan, “I’d thought he was a man. Is he – quite safe?  I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion.”

“That you will, dearie, and no mistake,” said Mrs. Beaver; “if there’s anyone who can appear before Aslan without their knees knocking, they’re either braver than most or else just silly.”

“Then he isn’t safe?” said Lucy.

“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you?  Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe.  But he’s good.  He’s the King I tell you.”

How many sit in church each week thinking God is perfectly safe.  Is the God of the Bible safe?  Most people in the congregation have no idea who they supposedly are worshipping on Sunday mornings.  They treat Him just as they treat any of the other accessories in their life.  He is not their treasure.  He is not honored.  He is not revered.  He is not glorified.  He is not exalted.  He is not praised as the great redeemer.  He is only spoken of as the great enhancer to an already comfortable and cozy life.  God says many times in scripture that he demands that his name be made holy.  He will not let his name be profaned.  Read the accounts in scripture about what happens to people who tread lightly where God has warned that we should take great care and be solemnly concerned.  He curses Cain.  He strikes down the sons of Aaron.  He dethrones king Saul.  He is not safe! But he is good.  He is the King.