Been re-reading Lord of the Rings… I am struck the poem that Bilbo writes about Aragorn. The poem is prophetic about Aragorn becoming the King he is meant to be. What struck me is that the poem looks through into future with hope in spite of the dreariness of the present state.
When the poem is written, the common towns people look at Aragorn as a bumb, a wanderer. He is derisively associated with the ‘rangers’ who wander about. He is weather worn and isn’t good looking either.
Aragon goes about wandering from place to place searching for things that are invisible to the common eye. He knows deep within that he is a King’s son and someday he will claim his throne. But until then, he has to wait and wait patiently going about the business of saving his Father’s kingdom, unbeknownst to the common folk.
It is in this context that Bilbo writes about Aragorn….
All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king
All that is gold does not glitter; Not all those who wander are lost… These words speak powerfully to the Christian living in the human condition. In life, everybody wanders. We never stay in one place. The question really is, are we wandering towards a destiny or are we truly lost.
When people look at us sometimes it may appear that we, as Christians, are wandering about spending time searching for God’s glories and glorifying Him in life… through church, missions etc. It may appear to others that we are confused people oblivious to the priorities of life. But they do not know that in all of our wandering, we aren’t lost.
Aragorn, my LOTR-nerd-friend Chuck Dotson says, wandered for about 80 years, which interestingly is close to the ‘wandering years’ of Moses before he encountered the Burning Bush! We should take courage from such ‘hopefulness’ and remember that in all of our wandering, we truly are going about the goal of ‘saving’ our Father’s Kingdom. We will never be lost!