This last week the House has been full of young people with their parents as we put on our ‘Back through the Wardrobe 3’, another wonderful opportunity to explore the truths about God in the Narnia Chronicles written by C.S. Lewis. Scargill became Narnia for the week as rooms were decorated to reflect the story.
We were focusing particularly on the Last Battle which is the last of the books and covers important topics like: deception; identity; judgement; courage; the end of the Old and the beginning of the New Narnia; and homecoming and it is this that I want to talk about briefly.
Jewel, the Unicorn, when he arrives into the New Narnia exclaims, “I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now…..Come further up, come further in!”
For many people home has been a difficult experience, something that people don’t want to remember. If, though, we were going to look at coming home as an experience that brings life what would it look like? These were some of the comments that people said during one of our sessions this week:
‘belonging, safe place, acceptance, love and laughter, finding my true self, sometimes challenging, good food, and space to be who I am ‘
It would seem to me that there is a longing and a yearning to experience coming home, and the church community should be a place where people can experience this generous homecoming.
Sister Stan writes in Gardening of the Soul writes, ‘Home is the place where we discover who we are, where we are coming from and where we are going to. It is where we learnt to love and be loved. It is where our needs of the body, mind and spirit are first recognised and met. It is where we learn to be whole, stable and yet always open to change and surprise.’
The parable of the prodigal son, or perhaps it should be called the parable of the prodigal father, highlights the generous attitude that we are invited to show when people come home, ‘but while he was still a long way off, his father saw him, and was filled with compassion…’ (Luke 15 v20)
Some of our guests, who come back to Scargill, describe it as a home from home. I like that…