I grew up searching for Narnia.
Before I read the Bible, I heard the Chronicles.
Before I knew of the Kingdom of God, I knew of the Kingdom of Peter, Susan, Lucy and Edmund.
Long before I found Jesus, I met Aslan.
For most of my childhood,
childhood being anywhere between the ages of 2 and 23,
I searched for a door there,
else, and I have definite memories of checking a few coat closets.
Narnia is not the only world I have longed to go to.
The list would go on for pages if I listed all the places I would have escaped to given the chance.
Escaped to from a world and a life and a self I could not endure. If I had just found the door.
Then Jesus said,
“I am the door”
and I believed Him.
Still I longed for a world like Narnia,
a world other than this world,
a life other than this life,
a me other than this me,
somehow not believing that I already had all of that.
How long did I stand just inside the threshold of “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life”, unwilling to lift a foot and step forward?
Unwilling to believe that what He says lies in front of me was real?
How long did I stand just inside the threshold of “I will give you rest” half-longing for the quiet death I had in Egypt and dreading the painful, living peace now laid before me?
Dreading the continual breathing of faith and a walk through the fire that will not consume?
I stood just inside the door, and the door never left, or said go back through, or said I don’t love you if you won’t walk.
He said simply,
“I will be with you, wherever you go, even to the end of the age.”
And after ten years of hearing it over and over again,
I believed Him.
And so I stepped,
not into, but further into,
the Kingdom that is, and is becoming, and shall come, and that always shall be,
and breathed deep of the same air that I had been breathing for the thirty years previous,
and of the same Spirit that I had been breathing for ten,
and did not die, for I already had,
and did not become, for I already was,
but began to die more, for I still need to,
and began to become more, for I’m not who I am yet,
and let go of Narnia and every other hopeful kingdom that I had once held onto,
and for the first time in a long time heard a greater roar than Aslan,
and knew that every promise made to the heart of this child
would be kept.