So I recently had a significant birthday. Alongside a beautiful cake, an original song written by my children, an orange bike and a surprise party, I had a family trip to the cinema to see the BFG.
It was one of my favourite books as a child, and so I was excited as well as nervous, memories of the Johnny Depp ending to Charlie and the Chocolate factory have made me fearful of what Hollywood can do to stories I love.
Anyway, I needn’t have feared- it was beautifully and gently filmed, funny and kind and faithful to the original. But what I wasn’t expecting was to have any sort of faith experience in Aylesbury Odeon, and yet…God speaks.
There is a moment in the film where the BFG and Sophie, hunting for dreams, catch a nightmare- the most horrible, cursed, terrifying, black hearted nightmare, a trogglehumper…they catch it, and cork it in a bottle, in order to protect the world from the horror.
Later, when it becomes necessary for them to release the dream into the minds of the sleeping giants, the BFG tells Sophie what it’s about…in a low, terrified voice, he tells her that the dream is this….
“Look at what you has done. There be no forgiveness.”
And he’s right…..that’s it…the horror, the nightmare, the worst thing imaginable is this; that there can be no forgiveness.
That every bitter thought, every selfish deed, every dishonesty, unkindness, cruelty, lie, unfaithfulness, disloyalty will stay with us, indelible, unforgettable, unforgiveable.
Look at what you has done….
Look at what you has done…
There be no forgiveness.
And yet, Jesus offers us a life free of that nightmare. He promises us a relationship which means that there is nothing, no sin or shame too great, that cannot be forgiven. Whatever and whenever, he will absolve us, and he promises us that when God looks at us, he sees us washed clean of all our imperfections.
No guilt in life, no fear in death, this is the power of Christ in me. What a way to start a new year. What a way to start a new way of understanding who you really are.
Praise God that he is so merciful, perfect and loving that although we deserve “look at what you has done” he offers us “As far as east is from west— that's how far God has removed our sin from us.”
And all we have to do is stretch out our hand to take the gift of grace that he is offering.
Heavenly father, thank you that you love us so much that you sent your only son to die for us before we knew you. I am sorry for the ways in which I have done wrong. Lord God I ask for your forgiveness, thank you that through Jesus I can come to you and receive it. Lord I want to live a life worthy of you, with you alongside me. Amen.