I’m watching Prince Caspian. In spite of the decades since Saint Jack first wrote the Narnia series, and in spite of the book/film differences, it never fails to inspire me. From the Arthurian flavour of the once-and-future kingship to the sheer nobility of a life of honour, it calls deep to deep in me.
I’m struck, watching Susan Pevensie on the battlements of the How, commanding the archers. Here she is, a fifteen-year-old schoolgirl from Finchley, who knows that in the Kingdom economy she walks in the authority of a warrior and a queen. I’m struck, watching eleven-year-old Lucy step up onto the frontline and draw her ridiculously small dagger in the face of the enemy – knowing the Lion approaches at her side. And I’m struck, watching Peter and Edmund battle between what our world says they are, and what they know they have been and still have the capacity to be: men of strength, men of God.
Our peers are wrestling with this every day. There are so many young men and women who, every day, face the same choice: will I be merely a regular kid, or will I be extraordinary? In my camouflage, who am I? Am I the angsty teen in a school brawl, or am I the Emperor’s delegate? Every day in a thousand small decisions, we can choose which identity we reflect. We can let the world tell us we’re small, ineffective. We can listen to the fears in our own heart which say, “You’re not really up for this.” We can listen to Time’s nag as it emphasises how long it’s been since we did something momentous. Or we can listen to the voice of the One who called us.
Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what He wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. (Romans 12:1-2, Msg)