Last time I talked about the elements of the Story of Hugo that were involved with grief and reconciling your past.
Things that are broken aren’t fulfiling their true purpose, I guess that’s why I feel so sad when I see something broken. Hugo’s story is one that is so much more than that though. For Hugo sees the world as he sees his clocks and machines that he can fix. He sees the people in it as pieces that fit into that, each one with a purpose. Not knowing what his purpose is gives him a great deal of the distress he feels at the beginning of the story. Discovering his place in the great clockworks of this world is a large part of the story. Seeing the stories of other people around him (the two loves stories of the station master and flower girl, coupled with the dog loving lady and Quiet man are interwoven with Hugo and George’s story) shows how we all interconnect and affect each other’s stories, and how each part of the clock is as important as any other. This is very much a Heavenly Kingdom concept, that we all have a role and purpose, and each one contributes in their own way to the community of this world and our own individual communities.
And because God made us for this purpose, made us for his own, signed his name as the proud designer, that trusting in him for the direction of our lives is the best way to see and achieve this purpose. (At the most simple level, handing control to the maker and designer, just as Bruce Almighty does).
This is very simply and gently outlined for us in the first Toy Story Film.
I can fly around this room with my eyes closed.
It’s a story of a man who is confused about his identity, a man who misunderstands his true purpose in this world, a man who thinks his importance is based on what he does not who he is. (And yes, I’m aware Buzz isn’t a man, he is a TOY – but it’s a metaphor, so go with me on this.) Buzz starts the story in utter delusion. And although it is delusion, it’s still an attractive one – he’s confident, motivated, secure in his identity as a Space Ranger – and it’s easy to slot into a purpose we’re not made for if it makes us feel so good. Often we choose the easy option of shoving ourselves into a round hole, despite our square, triangular, or whatever shape we are – because that’s what’s expected of us; we readily accept the delusion because it makes us happy in the here and now. But if we’re not working in the way we’re supposed to work, it not only affects us, but the other parts of the Machine/Body around us. Shoving a cog into a place it doesn’t belong ultimately damages that cog and the others around it.
Not a Flying toy. And when Buzz sees the truth of what he is, damage is the first thing that happens. His dreams literally crash to earth. Because he sees this true nature as something that’s worthless, useless, a waste. And that’s because he’s focussing on himsef and his view of the world – and though He now understands what he is not, and his knowledge of his nature is now accurate, he still does not truly understand his purpose. The journey towards understanding that purpose is only complete once he understands his worth through the eyes of his creator and his “owner”.
Your Leader Andy inscribed his name on Me. Far from being worthless, Buzz by his very nature brings joy to someone else. What a great Purpose! And at the end of the day, that’s the true purpose for all of us. It’s not to grow or be healthy or “find fulfillment” but to bring joy to God – and we really don’t have to try all that hard, because His love for us has nothing to do with our actions, and everything to do with His nature. Our Worth comes from the Price He’s willing to pay for us – and He’s already paid the highest posssible Price. And like a Stradivarius violin, lovingly made and signed, each of us is signed with the imprint of our creator – God Writes His name on your foot, because He’s proud of you, He’s fond of you, He believes in you. He writes his name on your life because you have greater value and worth than you could possibly know. And because He is the one that made you, He knows what you were made for, He knows how you tick. He won’t ask you to do something you weren’t designed for – but that doesn’t stop us trying to do things we weren’t designed for (although designed to live in community, so many of us live alone or in nuclear families.)
That’s not Flying, it’s falling with style And so in the end, Buzz accepts who and what he is. But not in a begrudging way, he embraces it fully and takes a new joy. And here’s the kicker – Whilst accepting his nature as a toy, as something that brings joy to another he can simultaneously still be the hero he thought he was; He’s still brave; He’s still a leader; He’s still the brilliant Space Ranger – you see that’s God’s upside down kingdom, in giving up your false image of yourself and living the purpose God has laid out for you, it turns out your true self isn’t that different from the dreams you had – but with a connection to your maker it’s the inner attitude that is now right. So guys, embrace your inner toy and seek your true purpose – one that gives joy to others, not one focussed on self.