SHREK Are you Princess Fiona? FIONA I am, awaiting a knight so bold as to rescue me. SHREK Oh, that's nice. Now let's go! FIONA But wait, Sir Knight. This be-ith our first meeting. Should it not be a wonderful, romantic moment? SHREK Yeah, sorry, lady. There's no time.
I love the movie Shrek. I love this moment. Fiona, so distracted by her notions of what she thinks her rescue should be like, that she doesn’t seem to care about how long and hard Shrek searched to find her, or that the door to her tower prison has finally been unlocked, or that there is a dragon below fighting to keep her caged. Nope. She just wants it to be romantic.
But isn’t rescue in and of itself romantic enough?
I’m sadly aware of the times when I have told Jesus that I didn’t want to do it His way. And I hear this a lot from people. Cause His way isn’t fun, it isn’t clean, it isn’t quick, it isn’t easy. We want a rescue from our own personal prison in a tower to be romantic. We want to escape from reality.
But the reality is this: Jesus walked a long way. Through the metaphorical fields of distance, climbing the hills built by our despair, scaling the mountains through the scent of our agony and pain, and crossing the bridge that we, or someone else, strung over waves of hot lava, the consequences of decisions made. He took each and every stone stair that wound up and around to the top of the tower, took the key from his robe and unlocked the door. He opened it and said, “I have come to free you, my beloved.”
Did we run to Him and let Him guide us by the hand back down the stairs, through the castle, past the dragon, and start the long journey back home? Or did we say, “This isn’t romantic enough”?
And you know I’m not really talking about romance. I’m talking more about our own perceptions.
It’s really hard to walk back down the tower, to race past the dragon that’s lurking, that chases, calling our name, trying to lure us back with fear, and then with the enticement of whatever it was that locked us up in the first place. Or perhaps someone else locked us up, and we just don’t know anything other than that tower prison.
We get to the rickety bridge, swaying over the lava, and Jesus says, “Trust me.”
Again, what is our response? Do we trust Him, or do we throw His rescue back in His face cause He’s not doing it our way. Because it’s taking too long. Because we want a quick fix.
Sometimes it happens quickly, a healing of the miraculous.
And sometimes, we have to walk through the smoke and the brimstone and the stank for a while. Cause our rescue doesn’t come on our terms. It’s comes on His. And rightfully it should be.
The rescuer determines the path, for He is the One that came all this way to find us. He knows the obstacles, He knows the dangers, He knows the way back. We have no other choice to listen.
And if we don’t, we are fools.
If you dare, read Isaiah 40…
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