Our theater company is preparing to perform a stage adaptation of George MacDonald’s The Princess and the Goblin. It is that intense and exhausting period known as “tech week”–today was the day we loaded our massive set into the theater we rent four times a year for our productions. I spent the day painting portable flooring.
The Princess and the Goblin is a delightful fantasy for children. It is also a beautiful story about faith and trust. Believing precedes seeing. Indeed, as one character wisely says, “Seeing is not believing. It is only seeing.” Irene and her great-great-grandmother embody something of the relationship that Christians have with the Holy Spirit. We are led by an invisible hand, and we trust that we will be led to safety–but we are surprised along the way by some of the places it takes us!
Producing a play is an act of faith. We see, in our mind’s eye, the finished product. We trust that God will grant us favor to see it to fruition. Along the way, surprising–and sometimes distressing–developments take place. But in the end, we arrive at a performance which is the essence of what we envisioned all along.
Our core scripture for this production is Hebrews 11:1–
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (KJV)
In the spirit of that quote, and because I don’t have mental energy to write anything more profound this week, I offer a selection of quotations from George MacDonald and C.S. Lewis on belief, faith, hope and trust compiled from Christian-quotes.oChristian.com.
“Few delights can equal the presence of one
whom we trust utterly.”
“It is not the cares of today, but the cares of tomorrow, that weigh a man down. For the needs of today we have corresponding strength given. For the morrow we are told to trust. It is not ours yet. It is when tomorrow’s burden is added to the burden of today that the weight is more than a man can bear.”
“Trust to God to weave your thread into the great web, though the pattern shows it not yet.”
“Man finds it hard to get what he wants, because he does not want the best; God finds it hard to give, because He would give the best, and man will not take it.”
“The very idea of freedom presupposes some objective moral law which overarches rulers and ruled alike. Unless we return to the crude and nursery-like belief in objective values, we perish.”
“Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted in spite of your changing moods.”
“We’re not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be.”
“You never know how much you really believe anything until its truth or falsehood becomes a matter of life and death to you.”