Spiritual journey: Grateful for belief

For Spiritual Journey Thursday, on the theme of gratitude.

I am grateful for a new morning. I am grateful to be writing about spiritual journeys on the first Thursday of the month, and for my fellow sojourners. As I write, silver-white stars are still glittering in the black sky. My kitchen bay window faces east where the sun is soon to rise. When it does, I will stop to drink in its glory.

I am grateful for books, for having developed a love of reading so early in life that I can’t remember learning how. I am grateful for libraries, for row upon row of treasures waiting to be discovered, for being ten years old and stooping to examine a curious title, for removing a book, opening the cover, and finding myself in another world.

Narnia, to be exact. That book was The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. It would send me scrambling for the rest of the books in the series, always longing for more. I was given a boxed set for my twelfth birthday and the tattered copies remain on my bookshelf to this day.

When it comes to spiritual journeys, no character in Narnia with the exception of Aslan (the Talking Lion, “King of Beasts, the son of the Emperor-Over-the-Sea, the King above all High Kings in Narnia”) outshines Reepicheep, leader of the Talking Mice. Reepicheep, who stands about two feet tall, is young King Caspian’s most loyal knight, quite fierce in battle with his small rapier. In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Reepicheep sails with his king to explore unmapped lands. He does not intend to return home to Narnia; instead, he means to sail to the end of the world, on to Aslan’s country.

No one knows if Aslan’s country can be reached this way. When Lucy (a human child from our world, if you did not already know) asks “Do you think Aslan’s would be that sort of country you could ever sail to,” Reepicheep says he does not know, but that when he was a baby a Dryad (spirit of a tree) sang to him in his cradle about finding his heart’s desire where “sky and water meet, where the waves grow sweet… there is utter East.”

In the movie, however, Reepicheep answers: “We have nothing if not belief.”

When the Dawn Treader can sail no farther, as it’s reached the shallows of lily-clogged, sweet waters where the sea and sky meet, Reepicheep makes his goodbyes. A tiny wooden boat is lowered from the ship and he sails on, alone, over the rim of the world.

No one ever sees him again.

At least, not in that world.

Aslan’s country is another matter…

I glance through my bay window facing east and see that the sky has changed. The upper canopy is now indigo, melting into turquoise, into lighter aqua nearer the horizon where the faintest yellow glows above a pale rosy blush… I cannot see the sun, but I know it is there… it is coming…as it always does.

I am grateful for a new morning. I am grateful for the coffee in my Reepicheep mug, for the eastern sky reminding me to rise above the things of this tainted world… as poet Robert Browning wrote: Man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?

I am grateful for the journey.


with thanks to C.S. Lewis and my fellow Spiritual Journey voyagers, especially Ruth who’s hosting today from Haiti. Visit her site, There’s No Such Thing as a God-Forsaken Town, for more on gratitude.

Also grateful for taking the plunge into creating this blog. A wonderful personal adventure it’s been, writing, discovering, remembering, and interacting with new friends all along the way. This is my 400th post.

11 thoughts on “Spiritual journey: Grateful for belief

  1. I feel like I am sitting with you having coffee this morning. The sun is coming up. I usually watch it on my walk but this morning I wanted to get a post up, so I am reading your post. I love the Browning quote, “Man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a Heaven for?” I am grasping beyond my reach this morning. Thanks for the company.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fran: You have captured my heart with your post. Thank you for your beautiful description of the dawning of a new day… an event that I usually miss due to being a night owl. What beauty is there!!! And…I must go back to the Narnia tales. The bravery is stunning. Yes… I must go back to them. Thank you for pointing me there, and for all of your beautiful and soul-filled words.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Fran, thanks for the literary journey into another realm and for these words: “for the eastern sky reminding me to rise above the things of this tainted world.” Rise above I shall. Another prospective buyer just left my house and I am wondering what she is thinking. Since I cannot dwell on the what ifs, Thank you for letting me imagine what the morning sky looks like in your part of the world. I drank in its glory with you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks Fran for the conversation. It has been a difficult day for me. We heard last night that the buyer who was supposed to buy our house (not yesterday’s buyer) has nixed the deal. What ifs are definitely coming into play.more than ever. Going back to writing to lose myself in pleasant thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love your mug! And your reflection. And sharing the sunrise with you this morning. I drank in all the colors you shared. Also grateful for new mornings, spiritual journeys and fellow sojourners. Congrats on your 400th post!

    Liked by 1 person

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