My family and I went to see the “Wizard of Oz” performed at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center this week. It was fabulous! I must say all the characters performed well—even Snickers who played the role of Toto.
This classic has always been one of my favorites. In fact, I use the principle in taught in L. Frank Baum’s tale in my book, “An Untroubled Heart…Finding a Faith Stronger Than All My Fear.”
Like the characters in Oz, we are all in search of something. For some it’s riches and fame; for others its popularity or position. But the Scarecrow, Tin man, and Lion weren’t looking for any of these things. No. They were in search of something far greater—wisdom, love, and courage.
In order to obtain these wonderful qualities, the friends went on a journey to see a great and power Wizard—who no doubt could grant what they sought. Along their way to the Emerald City in the land of OZ, they were meant with much adversity. Evil in the form of a wicked witch did all she could to keep them from their path. Not only that, but she wanted to steal Dorothy’s ruby slippers that were given to her by the Glenda the good witch. Sound familiar?
Along our journey in life, we too, are met with hardships. Sometimes our troubles are the result of consequences brought on by our own bad choices. Others times they are the results of simply living in a fallen, broken world. Often times, our misfortunes are caused by our enemy, Satan, who is out to steal what God has given us. If Satan can steal our hope, joy, and peace he’s done much to shut us down. Thankfully, like Glenda, our heavenly Father is always watching out for us, protecting us, and guiding us back to the right path.
After arriving at Oz, our friends soon realized that the Wizard was no Wizard at all. Disappointment swept their hearts for they had traveled a long way in hopes of great gain. I can help but identify with their disillusionment. Often, I look to God as if He has a magic wand. With one wave of His wand, my troubles would be over or I could have instantly what I want. But this isn’t the way God works.
It’s often on the journey of life that we gain riches of character just like our friends. You see, in the end, the Wizard helped the fictional characters to see that what they sought they already obtained. For the Scarecrow had a brilliant mind and the Tin-man was a kind and caring friend. …And what about the lion? Well, he was no dandelion at all. He was the bravest of the bunch! Even Dorothy realized that she didn’t have to go looking for what she sought. It could be found in her own back yard.
Like Dorothy and her friends, we don’t always see the obvious—God’s provision in everyday circumstances—but it’s there and available waiting to empower us beyond our imagination.