When Mice Grow and Elephants Shrink

Deep in C. S. Lewis’s The Magician’s Nephew, a little cluster of folks get to peak in on the creation of Narnia. They watch as Aslan sings into life the sun and the moon, the hills and the rivers, the trees and the flowers. And then a climactic moment: The surface of the earth begins to boil like water, and suddenly animals burst into being from its dust. Many of the creatures are quickly sent off by Aslan simply to be, while some selected representatives gather ‘round the great lion and wait – for what, the cluster of witnesses do not know. But then they watch as the smallest among the creatures appear to grow in size in the presence of Aslan. The mice, the moles, the rabbits, the beavers – all of them, now a bit bigger. But this, too: The elephant that looms largest among the creatures – he grows smaller in the presence of the lion who stands at the center. It’s a picture of Narnia at her creation, and just as much a picture of the recreation begun at Easter.

So many folk made small populate Easter Sunday in the Story. A woman weeping in grief because life has been defeated – and seemingly so as once for all. Two disciples hightailing it out of town, hunch-backed as they do because “they had hoped,” and hope was now buried deep in the earth behind a stone. A disciple locked away in a room, beard caked with snot and tears over his having denied three times over the only one who ever loved him.

But then the Creator returns to recreate.

And the woman is soon running to preach the first gospel sermon – this despite her knowing her witness wouldn’t be credible in courtrooms and her story will be the butt of jokes at the next Jerusalem wedding. The disciples out on the outskirts road suddenly straighten and run back to spread the word in Jerusalem, a city they were probably terrified to return to just moments before, thinking it would seal their own cross-riddled fate. And Peter – soon he’ll be jumping in the sea with his clothes on to get to the Creator for a recommissioning.

Because we grow in the presence, don’t we? A wonderful gift of resurrection.

And then there are the larger folk of Easter Sunday. The soldiers with their polished shields and ghastly spears. The religious leaders lapping up saliva gathered at the corners of their lips because their mouths still water at their supposed victory. The pompous governor being fanned as he sits and spits out grape seeds, thinking his wife’s nightmare was just that – a nightmare and nothing more.

But then the Creator returns to recreate.

And the clowns soon gather to figure out some way – any way – they can convince the world the Creator has not returned to recreate. How very small of them. How very small they now are. How very small, small, smaller still they will become.

Because we shrink in the presence, don’t we? A wonderful gift of resurrection.

The Creator has returned to recreate. And it is good. It is very good.

To read Monday’s Passion Week reflection, click here.

To read Tuesday’s, click here.

To read Wednesday’s, click here.

To read Thursday’s, click here.   

I chose a bit of silence for Friday, but goodness – if you read one thing, read this.

To read Saturday’s Passion Week reflection, click here.