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Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis

Recently, I finished “Till We Have Faces” by C.S. Lewis. I will admit that even now, I’m not exactly sure what the title means. None the matter, I’ve posted two parts on my wiki that I wish to remember. Here, I’ll attempt briefly to explain what they mean to me. In reverse order:

Of the things that followed I cannot at all say whether they were what men men call real or what men call dream. And for all I can tell, the only difference is that what many see we call a real thing, and what only one sees we call a dream. But things that many see may have no taste or moment in them at all, and things that are shown only to one may be spears and water spouts of truth from the very depth of truth. [p. 277]

These sentences are like old familiar friends. I recall the time when I first started to dream. Around that time, I came to believe what Shakespeare said best with:

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy. [Hamlet Act 1, scene 5]

At the risk of sounding too “out there,” I’ll admit that there are things that I feel I have “dreamed” and which were very real and very true. Some of the greatest of these have been in relationship with God.

The second and far more meaningful section is longer so I’ll reproduce only the couple sentences that stand out:

I perceived now that there is a love deeper than theirs who seek only the happiness of their beloved. Would a father see his daughter happy as a whore? [p. 138]

Isn’t that God’s predicament? I want God to settle. We want God to settle. If only he could be proud to see me achieve the success I desire. But that’s asking too little of him and he won’t compromise. He needn’t compromise.

So, give it a read. What stands out to you?