Faith the Size of a Hobbit

Hobbits & Hope

I was watching the best movie trilogy ever made. Lord of the Rings, obviously.

Tolkein’s story has a Christian worldview, so there are many spiritual applications that can be drawn from it, but naturally, the one that I thought up has to do with my long-time theme.

Merry Brandybuck and Eowyn are preparing for battle. He is a hobbit — halfling — and she is a woman. They are both weaker and smaller than the warriors that are arraying to fight the worst baddies in Middle Earth, Sauron’s twisted, evil, mutilated forces.

The forces of men aren’t expecting to win, even though the fate of Middle Earth is at stake.

Merry recognizes this fact.


“My lady, you are fair and brave and have much to live for, and many who love you. I know it is too late to turn aside. I know there is not much point now in hoping. If I were a knight of Rohan capable of great deeds… but I’m not. I’m a Hobbit. And I know I can’t save Middle-Earth. I just want to help my friends.”

Merry Brandybuck Return of the King

In my family, we joke that if we were in Middle Earth, we probably would be hobbits.

Hobbits & Humility

Except that we should probably all be hobbits. In our Christian life, we like to think that we’re like the wise wizards, the contemplative elves, the brave men; and maybe, if we’re really self-aware, the stubborn, comedic dwarves.  The fate of our world is on our hands. We will do battle against the forces of evil.

In reality, we are the hobbits. Insignificant to the world with few skills and capabilities outside of eating and drinking and getting together to party. It’s like a Baptist potluck, basically. Merry’s perspective, that his war is about helping his friends — his neighbors Frodo, Sam, and Pippin — is a healthy perspective that all Christians should have. Even Frodo, who arguably has the most important responsibility in the trilogy, had a very personal reason. “We set out to save the Shire, Sam,” he tell his friend.

As noted in my other blog posts about this topic, it isn’t that desiring to help reach the world and change the world for Christ is bad or wrong. However, God does not need our help to save the world. Remembering that we are insignificant, we can do great things if we stay faithful. That’s for sure. Humility and understanding of our place is more necessary than grand schemes.

A day may come when I stop seeing this theme of what I am calling faithful insignificance in everything around me. But it is not this day! This is the theme of the wisdom book of Ecclesiastes, which, as I’ve mentioned is still something I think about quite a lot. (And blog about even more!)

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter:
Fear God and keep His commandments,
For this is man’s all.

For God will bring every work into judgment,
Including every secret thing,
Whether good or evil.

Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

Fearing God and keeping His commandments is the duty of all men, both great and small, of Heroes and Hobbits.

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