J. R. R. Tolkien was a Christian. Whether he meant for there to be spiritual parallels to the concepts presented in the Lord of the Rings trilogy is up for grabs. Personally I believe he knew those spiritual parallels. I have sat in Lewis and Tolkien’s corner at the Eagle and Child in Oxford, England. Tolkien and Lewis bantered all sorts of topics in their daily discussions at the pub. In fact, it was Tolkien who was instrumental in Lewis’ move from atheism to theism and beyond.
That’s mostly irrelevant because Lewis and Tolkien are gone and we are here! We now play our part in our world which influences our own hearts and the hearts around us for God or not. What role are you playing?
Galadriel speaks to Frodo: “This task was appointed to you, and if you do not find a way, no one will!” Frodo with Sam’s support saw his task to the end and then he was rescued.
So it is our task to grapple with the themes God has given us through the Lord of the Rings
(actually they echo His Words) and find a way with His support and the support of the Community He has given us.
- Fate Has Chosen Him. (God has chosen you.).
- A Fellowship Will Protect Him. (A Fellowship will protect you.)
- This task was appointed to you, and if you do not find a way, no one will! (You have a part to play in God’s plan. If you don’t find a way, no one will.)
- Evil Will Hunt Them (Evil is hunting you.).
When we are transformed by Jesus we are given a new heart. The old heart is transformed into a new heart. We are also given abilities and gifts which we could never experience without this transformation. You have it and I have it–a new heart.
Corner of the pub where the Inklings met for 20 years.
What is the heart in the spiritual sense? There are several components which I like to focus on and will do so here. We are all well aware that we have the ability to think. If we are normal, we think from our rising to our lying back down again. We are emotional creatures. Most of us are very much aware of our feelings and emotions. But there is more to us as well. We have desires. Some desires are more shallow while others are considered deep desires. Deep in the sense that we are not well aware of their existence or how they influence other components of our hearts–but, they are there none the less. Depending on our upbringing, personality, and environment, those deep desires may be distorted. In fact, I venture because we live in a fallen world, most all of us have distorted desires.
What are some example of deep desires?
The good deep desires are things like: longing for meaning and purpose, to be part of something greater than ourselves. We long to love and be loved, to pursue others and be pursued by others and with those desires, to be in community and to be in a family. Many desire to have impact and significance in what we accomplish. We want honor, to be respected, and to be understood. We long to provide for those in our domain and to protect them as well. We long to perform honorably and to hear “well done” for a job or task well done. Beauty and creativity are placed within the heart of so many who long to express that beauty and creativity in many ways. We are called to be a just people and to promote justice in all aspects of society and with that freedom for all. We long for peace in our hearts and to be whole and complete. Lastly and maybe most importantly, we who follow Jesus know intrinsically that this is not our home, we long to be at home with Him.
For more on deep desires, take a look at these desires.
God wants us to know that the deep desires which surface are given to us by Him. He wants to meet us in our deep desires and fulfill them as we would our part to play in His Kingdom.
I want to also look at emotions and what role they play in God’s grand design for us.