The Chronicles of Narnia is a well-loved series of seven books written by C.S. Lewis. They are a representation of Lewis’ spiritual and Christian beliefs. In the last book entitled The Last Battle the Narnians are at war with the Calormenes, a nearby kingdom whose people serve the evil ‘god’ known as Tash. In chapter 12, some of the main characters and true believers of Aslan are thrown into a stable as a sacrifice to Tash. Inside, the stable a Calormene soldier is waiting to execute them. However, when they enter the stable they find to their surprise that they are out in the open. It is a different world and full of sunlight and beautiful trees and flowers and Aslan is waiting to greet them commanding them to “Go further up and further in.” This land is a representation of heaven.
The next scene is one of my favourite scenes in the whole Narnia series. There now enters into the stable a young Calormene soldier who has served the god Tash all his life. He goes into the stable willingly hoping to meet his god but encounters Aslan instead and finds in him beauty that ‘surpasses all that is in the world even as the rose in bloom surpasses the dust of the desert,’ Later, he narrates what happens during this encounter to the kings and queens of Narnia.
‘Then I fell to his feet and thought, Surely this is the hour of my death for the lion (who is worthy of all honour) will know that I have served Tash all my days and not him. But the Glorious One bent down his golden head and touched my forehead with his tongue and said, Son thou art welcome. But I said, Alas, Lord, I am no child of thine but the servant of Tash. he answered, Child, all the service thou hast done to Tash, I account as service done to me….I and he (Tash) are such different kinds that no service which is vile can be done to me, and none which is not vile can be done to him. Therefore, if any man swear by Tash and keep his oath for oath’s sake, it is by me that he has truly sworn though he know it not and it is I who reward him. And if any man do a cruelty in my name, then, though he says Aslan, it is Tash whom he serves and by Tash his deed is accepted. Dost thou understand child?
What a wonderful message of God’s love and mercy Lewis tries to convey! Oftentimes people put up barriers between themselves and those of different beliefs, faiths or outlook on life. True followers of God are known by their deeds and actions. God knows them by their hearts. This is also represented in the parable of the sheep and the goats. (Matthew 25:31-46)
Real charity starts in our hearts and is birthed out of us in love. We need to realize the importance of serving each other in unselfish love without agendas. When we do, we are serving God and transformation happens.