The Dearest of Deer

Thank you, Lord, for allowing us to live in a home surrounded by a forest!

When I was driving home this afternoon I was stunned by the majestic flight of a dozen bald eagles as they danced in the sky above our small community of Seabeck, Washington. I pulled to the side of the road and enjoyed their ballet for some time before deciding that I would blog about eagles when I returned home.

Then I saw something even more precious. Just outside the window of my study a doe and her two (very) young fawns walked past. I grabbed my camera and snapped no fewer than fifty photos as they grazed on the nearby lawn. (I decided as they wandered on down another trail that the post on the eagles would wait.)

The fawns were so tiny I don’t think they could have been fourteen inches tall. (Sorry, we older Americans are still metric-impaired.) They stood as though they were still getting the feel of their tiny legs. It was a glorious scene.

C.S. Lewis graced the land of Narnia with a stunning array of creatures. Some are not found in this world, apart from myths. Unicorns and centaurs would be of that ilk.

I happen to find the others even more fascinating. The horses, dogs and bears that are familiar to us, but different. Different because they have been gifted with speech, and with it, the ability to know and follow their Maker.

As he wrote in his description of Narnia’s creation in The Magician’s Nephew:

And now, for the first time, the Lion [Aslan] was quite silent. He was going to and fro among the animals. And every now and then he would go up to two of them (always two at a time) and touch their noses with his. He would touch two beavers among all the beavers, two leopards among all the leopards, one stag and one deer among all the deer, and leave the rest. . . . The creatures whom he had touched came and stood in a wide circle around him. . . .

The Lion, whose eyes never blinked, stared at the animals as hard as if he was going to burn them up with his mere stare. And gradually a change came over them. The smaller ones—the rabbits, moles, and such-like—grew a good deal larger. The very big ones—you noticed it most with the elephants—grew a little smaller. Many animals sat up on their hind legs. Most put their heads on one side as if they were trying very hard to understand. The Lion opened his mouth, but no sound came from it; he was breathing out, a long, warm breath; it seemed to sway all the beasts as the wind sways a line of trees.

Far overhead from beyond the veil of blue sky which hid them the stars sang again; a pure, cold, difficult music. Then there came a swift flash like fire (but it burnt nobody) either from the sky or from the Lion itself, and every drop of blood tingled in the children’s bodies, and the deepest, wildest voice they had ever heard was saying: “Narnia, Narnia, Narnia, awake. Love. Think. Speak. Be walking trees. Be talking beasts. Be divine waters.”

The scene I was privileged to observe today reminded me of the innocence of nature, prior to humanity’s disobedience. It also reminded me of the Messianic promises that restored “nature” will enable lions to lie in harmony beside sheep.

In his book Miracles, Lewis discusses this from the perspective of redemption, as contrasted with simply understanding it as a consequence of a “new” creation.

The doctrine of a universal redemption spreading outwards from the redemption of Man, mythological as it will seem to modern minds, is in reality far more philosophical than any theory which holds that God, having once entered Nature, should leave her, and leave her substantially unchanged, or that the glorification of one creature [humanity] could be realised without the glorification of the whole system.

God never undoes anything but evil, never does good to undo it again. The union between God and Nature in the Person of Christ admits no divorce. He will not go out of Nature again and she must be glorified in all ways which this miraculous union demands. When spring comes it “leaves no corner of the land untouched;” even a pebble dropped in a pond sends circles to the margin.

I said a prayer this evening that the Lord would bless that lovely doe and her precious offspring with long, healthy, safe, peaceful, and even, happy lives.

12 thoughts on “The Dearest of Deer

  1. Beautiful photo. We often have deer come around our home. I think they know they are safe here as no one hunts on our land. It is a blessing to live near the woods and be able to see so many of God’s animals.

    1. No one hunts in our immediate vicinity either. I almost feel guilty though, wanting them to be comfortable around our home and knowing that could jeopardize their futures.

    1. I agree that they’re quite young. Mom seems to have them secured somewhere now since we’ve seen her several times now without them. She’s been grazing on the clover that we have seeded into our lawn just for her and the bunnies! (Several visitors have told us, “you have a lot of clover in your lawn . . . they have products that are very effective in treating that!”)

  2. Aleksandra

    Good whatever time of day applies! I’m from Ukraine =) Today I barged into your web-site. It became opening for me…
    First of all I want to say Thank you for your minds, for your blog. I read recently Narnia’s chronics and it admitted wonderful air in my soul. That’s why your blog interested me at once (may be it happend in first time with me, because I’m not a bloger). I just want to say – Thank you :) More precisely – Спасибо! – like we saying in Ukraine or Russia – slavs. You know, it means “save God”(Спаси Бог) =)…

      1. Aleksandra, I’m pleased you enjoyed my blog. Please keep reading. I’m glad that you enjoyed the Chronicles of Narnia. C.S. Lewis also wrote a wonderful book called “Mere Christianity” that explains the common beliefs shared by all Christians. He was once an atheist, and after he came to trust in Jesus, his entire life changed for the better.

        Oh, and as for apologizing about your English… you don’t need to. You communicate well. And the truth is, no American has a right to criticize anyone else’s grasp of the language until they can speak 2 or more languages just as most Europeans do! During my life I’ve studied three other languages, but I remain fluent in only one. So I greatly admire linguistic accomplishments such as your own.

  3. Pingback: Respecting Animals We Kill « Mere Inkling Press

  4. Pingback: C.S. Lewis & a Horse Named Fledge « Mere Inkling Press

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