C.S. Lewis: A Life Remembered

by Josh Fults

There are some events if your life that you are able to remember so vividly due to the pleasant emotions that surround the memories. When I was around the age of twenty-two, I received the box set of C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia. I had never been exposed to any of Lewis’ work. As I opened the first book in the series, The Magician’s Nephew, the Narnia magic grabbed my by the collar and pulled me deep into the book. I spent several days reading the entire series. As I remember that week of my life, I am flooded with pleasant memories. I had never read fiction that made me love Christ more. I was reminded of how majestic, holy, good, and terrifying God is. Many people view fiction as something people read to be merely entertained, but good fiction is so much more. We learn through the art of story. After all, didn’t Jesus often use story to give theology a face? Lewis was a master in carving out fiction that brings us focus. We are reminded that the majestic lion, Aslan, who is the Christ figure in Narnia isn’t safe. “But He’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”

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It wasn’t long after my journey through the wardrobe, that I met some demons, Screwtape and Wormwood. In his book, The Screwtape Letters, I was reminded how strident Satan is in the destruction of man. How we are often manipulated through suggestion by unseen forces bent on our demise, or at least to bring us pain, misery, and unhappiness. We are reminded of the subtlety of the enemy. “Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one–the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”

A few years later I hailed a bus through heaven and hell in The Great Divorce. Everyone can take “the bus” to the destination of his or her choice. Some choose heaven, others hell, but all choose. As Lewis reminds us, “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, “Thy will be done,” and those to whom God says, in the end, “Thy will be done.” All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. Those who knock it is opened.”

Next, it was in the widely read Mere Christianity that I consumed from Lewis. A masterpiece in apologetics that should be required reading for every believer…

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