Earlier this week, I was walking on campus, and I came across this post on one of the notice boards on campus. It reads as follows:
“… vielleicht sind alle Drachen unseres Le ens Prinzessinnen, die nur darauf warten, uns einmal schön und mutig zu sehen. Vielleicht ist alles Schreckliche im tiefsten Grunde das Hilflose, das von uns Hilfe will.” – Rainer Maria Rilke
Roughly, it translates to the following, “Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.”
It is only Wednesday today, but I’ve been trusting God for breakthrough in many of my relationships (whether friendships, romantic-relationships, family relationships, etcetera), this week.
On Monday, Jonita and I went to Wimpy for coffee and fellowships and, incidentally, we discussed relationships. Amongst other things, we just shared our hearts on our callings in life, and how that seemed to fit into the relationships we have, and the various people who speak into our lives.
Yesterday, I met one of my friends (whom I haven’t spoken to in three weeks), and we had a good chat about faith, the seasons of moulding we’re going through, and life in general. Scarcely an hour after that, one of my other friends texted me and asked whether I wanted to hang out tomorrow (which is today, of course).
Admittedly, I was surprised. Jaco and I had not spoken since August 2013. Receiving a text from him asking if I wanted to meet kind of blew me away. Now, to add a little context to the situation: Jaco and I share mutual friends (whom I’ve known since 2004), and we used to do a lot of things together – anything from bungee jumping to making pasta. However, as I said before, in August last year, he just suddenly broke off our friendship without any explanation. Obviously, that meant that I didn’t hang out with our mutual friends either because he avoided me as far as possible. I tried phoning him a couple of times, wanting to talk it out, but when he didn’t reply, I figured he needed some space. I prayed and asked God to work in our hearts. I must admit, I was offended by the fact that he didn’t tell me what was going on, but after sorting it out with God I forgave him.
Today, we met up for coffee and talked things through. It turns out that we were both offended by the same things in each other, but because of misunderstandings we got hurt. I wouldn’t say we’re back to pasta-making yet, but I am looking forward to taking it one day at a time and having my friend back.
The third “restored” relationship concerns a new friend of mine, Tobie. I’ve known Tobie for six weeks now, and already he is becoming one of my best friends. Last night, we had a good talk about relationships (once again, all kinds of relationships), God’s plans, and growth.
One of my all time favourite scriptures is from Proverbs 27:17, which says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”
I guess the thing is, we need people in our lives – whether we want to admit it or not. God created us for fellowship, not only with other people, but primarily with Him. Getting back to the quote I posted at the beginning, I guess in many ways we’re all Dragon Keepers. There are things which we don’t want to share with others, or are afraid to talk about – anticipating judgement, disappointment, or rejection. Unfortunately, whether intentionally or not, we humans tend to weigh our experiences (good and bad) up against one another, and judge situations accordingly.
I know that in my life at least, that is most certainly true. Much of what I’ve learned in my relationship with God was either fuelled by, or challenged by, my interaction with other people.
Ultimately, I suppose, we’re “dragons”, crying out for love. The enemy is very successful at making us feel unworthy, grotesque, dirty and slimy. However, that is not how God sees us. In an earlier post (Sanctuary) I shared about how the enemy most often will attack our intimacy with God in trying to remind us of our sin, and so doing cause a sense of unworthiness.
However, Jesus is the ultimate Dragon Slayer or Dragon Transformer if you will. His love transforms us from fire-breathing reptiles that fiercely guard the towers of our fragile hearts, and brings us to a place of understanding of our royal inheritance.
You might be reading this, thinking it is a lame comparison, but I can tell you this: scripture says that He trades ashes for beauty, and sorrow for rejoicing.
I might not know what your circumstances are, but I challenge you to face your dragons. There’s a song that Josh Groban sings entitled “Weeping”, which tells the story of a monster that everyone was afraid of. In the end it is discovered that the smoke and thunder was not in anger, ‘because it wasn’t roaring, it was weeping. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-GrOzichZ8
May you have the courage to face your dragons, and may you comfort others as they are facing theirs. May you be sharpened by iron, and may you in turn sharpen others. May your relationships be restored and may you have breakthrough in whichever situation you’re trusting God for.
Lastly, I’d just like to share this clip from Voyage of the Dawntreader (a brilliant Narnia film) in which Eustace is transformed from being an enchanted dragon, back into a boy when Aslan scratches the scales off him. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIQZAEvsUGI
Sometimes transformation may be painful, but if we allow God to work in our hearts, we’ll come to understand our true identity!
God bless you and keep you!