Sunday, January 8, 2012

Low Flying

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff – they comfort me. (Psalm 23:4)

In The Magician's Nephew, a prequel to the other books in C.S. Lewis's Narnia series, Aslan sends Digory on a mission that will help save the newly created land of Narnia. He gives him a winged horse and these instructions:

"Do not fly too high….Do not try to go over the tops of the great ice-mountains. Look out for the valleys, the green places, and fly through them. There will always be a way through."

Too many times I see obstacles as things to be overcome, surmounted, climbed or jumped over. Aslan's advice seems contrary to my first instinct, but on second thought, it makes so much sense. There are many dangers to being at high, cold altitudes, while the valleys are much warmer, with access to food, water, and shelter if needed. It is much safer to fly between the mountains than over them, but so often I get fixated on a goal and one way to get there and I forget to look for other, better ways to achieve the same ends.

This New Year, I resolve to keep an open mind and look for alternative paths, especially since the paths I have been following haven't yet gotten me where I want to be. I resolve also to trust Aslan's word that "there will always be a way through," and to have faith that it will lead to the place that I need to be, even if that place is not the same as the place I want to be.

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