“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” C.S. Lewis
Today, November 29, 2011, would have been C.S. Lewis’s 113th birthday. It makes me think of the quote from Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings who was 111 when he said, “Alas, eleventy-one years is far too short a time to live among such excellent and admirable hobbits. I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”
C.S. Lewis is of course famous for his theological treatises, as well as his fairy tales. What interests me is that late in life, C.S. Lewis wrote less theological treatises and more “children’s” stories, believing that lessons are learned better when told in story form. Beyond believing that he was right, it interests me because many of us as we age tend to move away from fairy tales and fantasies, exchanging such frivolity for the mundane and serious. I may be fantastic in my belief, but I suspect that Lewis was more of a child when he died than when he was a young man.
This is important. Actually it is, in my mind, of critical importance. Namely, I believe we must work hard as we age to continue to dream, continue to set goals, some of which are fantastic. Dreams are what give the soul life; wishful fantasies are important to bring joy to the mundane drudgery in which we too often live.
Dreaming can become difficult the older we get because we are afraid of disappointment. Past failures cause us to be afraid to trust… to trust ourselves or to trust that God will not disappoint. We must learn to dream big, but to hold such dreams loosely. We need to trust God that He will always fulfill our wildest fantasies…as long as they are good for us. In the same way that a parent must temper a child’s desires, God will not always fulfill every fantasy of ours. But just like a parent who loves her child, God will fulfill every healthy wish. In fact, He generally will fulfill far beyond what we could have hoped and dreamed (cf. Ephesians 3:20).
So in honor of C.S. Lewis’s birthday, dust off some of those wild ideas, dream big, and set a new, fantastic goal. Put the fear in the backseat and floor the accelerator. Turn the radio up, and let your hair blow in the wind… no matter how old you are.