Then at last, as they stood for a moment looking out toward the sea and Cair Paravel (which they could now just make out) the red turned to gold along the line where the sea and the sky met and very slowly up came the edge of the sun. At that moment they heard from behind them a loud noise - a great cracking, deafening noise as if a giant had broken a giant's plate.
"What's that?" said Lucy, clutching Susan's arm.
"I - I feel afraid to turn around," said Susan; "something awful is happening."
"They're doing something worse to Him," said Lucy. "Come on!" And she turned, pulling Susan round with her.
The rising of the sun had made everything look so different - all colors and shadows were changed - that for a moment they didn't see the important thing. Then they did. The Stone Table was broken into two pieces by a great crack that ran down it from end to end; and there was no Aslan.
"Oh, oh, oh!" cried the two girls, rushing back to the Table.
"Oh, it's too bad," sobbed Lucy; "they might have left the body alone."
"Who's done it?" cried Susan. "What does it mean? Is it more magic?"
"Yes!" said a great voice behind their backs. "It is more magic." They looked around. There, shining in the sunrise, larger than they had seen him before, shaking his mane (for it had apparently grown again) stood Aslan himself.
"Oh, Aslan!" cried both the children, staring up at him, almost as much frightened as they were glad.
"Aren't you dead then, dear Aslan?" said Lucy.
"Not now," said Aslan.
"You're not - not - a?" asked Susan in a shaky voice. She couldn't bring herself to say the word ghost. Aslan stooped his golden head and licked her forehead. The warmth of his breath and a rich sort of smell that seemed to hang about his hair came all over her.
"Do I look it?" he said.
"Oh, you're real, you're real! Oh, Aslan!" cried Lucy, and both girls flung themselves upon him and covered him with kisses.
"But what does it all mean?" asked Susan when they were somewhat calmer.
"It means," said Aslan, "that though the Witch knew the Deep Magic, there is a magic deeper still which she did not know. Her knowledge goes back only to the dawn of time. But if she could have looked a little farther back, into the stillness and the darkness before Time dawned, she would have read there a different incantation. She would have known that when a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backward. And now -"
"Oh yes. Now?" said Lucy, jumping up and clapping her hands.
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
For the past few weeks, Will and the boys have been reading this story at bedtime. They attempted it earlier this year without much success, then out of the blue the interest was rekindled. Since then, they have been all about this book! They finished it a few days ago!
Admittedly, this Easter hasn't been our most focused. Or so we thought! While Mom and Dad were busy being distracted, Aslan was busy licking our "little Edmunds" on the forehead and letting them know He was alive! Letting them know about His "magic deeper still" that turned Death itself around! Letting them know the Good News worthy of jumping up and clapping their hands about! Setting their hearts toward "the rising of the (Son) that makes everything look so different"!
The boys and Will had some good conversations this week surrounding this bedtime story, all arranged by Him! We didn't even notice...
Praise be to God who is always at work, even when Mom and Dad might be asleep. Praise be to God for speaking the language of little hearts. Praise be to God for reminding us that all hinges upon what He has done, not what we do. Praise be to our Risen Lord, "a willing victim" without blemish who died instead of us. Praise God for the wonderful "Now"!