Summary: A sermon written in connection with the release of "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe", it focuses on the change that takes place in the children who visit Narnia and urges the hearers to be changed by Christ.
Change, it seems, is an inevitable part of life. As a matter of fact, whether you want to or not, you have to experience change every day. Even though our routines may be the same day in, day out, the circumstances of each day change and make those routines new. Granted, not all changes are for the better. Some are for the worse. But the bottom line is the same: change is an integral part of life. Think of it this way: the only people who really don’t change are people who have died.
Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie faced a difficult change in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the beloved book by C. S. Lewis which has been adapted into a major motion picture. For those of you unfamiliar with the book, let me sum it up for you. In World War II, the Pevensies are sent to a large manor house so they’ll be safely out of London. That change was bad enough, it would seem, but an even greater change was soon to come.
One day, while they’re playing hide and seek, the youngest sister, Lucy, finds a large wardrobe and hides inside it. Much to her surprise, she discovers that the wardrobe is in fact a door into the fantasy world of Narnia, filled with fairy tale creatures and talking animals. Soon thereafter, her siblings discover Narnia as well, and they find themselves in the middle of a war.
You see, Narnia is ruled by the evil White Witch, a cruel woman who can turn her enemies into stone. She’s cursed Narnia and frozen it, so that it’s “always winter, but it never gets to Christmas.” The citizens of Narnia, while terrified of the Witch, are also hopeful that they’ll be saved by a lion named Aslan, the son of the Great Emperor Beyond the Sea. And so the Pevensie children find themselves thrust into the conflict between the Witch and Aslan.
I don’t want to say too much more, because I don’t want to ruin the plot for anyone. Even though the book itself is very short, it’s packed with so many images and themes, I could probably preach a dozen sermons on them. But don’t worry, I’m not about to do that. Instead, I want to talk about the change that happens in the Wardrobe.
Throughout all the books that take place in Narnia, the children that go there are usually in need of change. Edmund Pevensie, for example, the second child to discover Narnia in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, needs to change badly. He’s rather mean-spirited, he teases his sister Lucy mercilessly, and, worst of all, betrays his brother and sisters and agrees to work for the Witch. In a later book, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, a cousin of the Pevensie children, a boy named Eustace Scrubb, goes to Narnia, and he needs to change as well. He’s even worse than Edmund, very smug and unwilling to acknowledge the wonders around him.
Even children born inside the wardrobe need to change. In yet another Narnia book, The Horse and His Boy, a young girl named Aravis needs to change her ways. She’s self-centered and very snobbish, not at all nice. Even the land of Narnia itself needs a change. Imagine a world where it’s always winter but Christmas never comes, a place where an evil witch can freeze people in stone, and you can see how the land of Narnia itself cries out for change.