Studying John 3:16-21 I couldn’t shake the character Gollum from my mind. Tolkien so carefully crafted a character that epitomizes “loving darkness rather than light.” He killed for the Ring, he hide for centuries to keep his “precious” safe, and when he ventured out to spy or thieve he hid behind the power of the Ring. Quite simply, He Hated The Light! The preciousness of his sin was far greater to him than the exposing power of the light, even if it meant he lost family, friends, health, and sanity. Even if it meant he lived in a gross, fermenting cave. Now before I make the jump to us, let me reflect on another piece of this great story. Bilbo, Frodo, and Samwise all at different points in the story felt compassion for Smeagol/Gollum and preserved him rather than destroyed him. Remember, Smeagol was once a Hobbit too, before the One Ring destroyed his life and turned him into the grotesque creature Gollum. These other Hobbits saw something of themselves in him and it brought out sympathy even in the face of his lies and mistreatment of them. My point? Of course we all have our caves hidden deep beneath the Misty Mountains, we nurse our own “precious” sins, tucked safely away from the light and exposure. And lest we get mad at everyone else’s “walking in darkness” let us feel it in ourselves first and walk out of our own caves. Let’s not despise Gollum before we recognize where we are him. Oh, that I might release that which is “precious” to me outside of Christ and boldly expose my heart to the piercing light of the Gospel. May your fate and mine be far different than Gollum’s. And if you aren’t sure what that is, I guess you’ll have to read the books.
Loving the Light,