In the children’s story Dom’s Dragon, the little boy Dom finds a small red egg. He decides to hide the egg under his bed. The next day, the egg hatches and out pops a little red dragon. She is a little bit hot and she glows, so Dom naturally names her Glow. He decides to hide Glow under his bed. That night we are told Dom has a nice and warm sleep thanks to the hot dragon glowing underneath his bed.
As one would expect, Glow starts to grow bigger. So Dom tries to hide it from his mum. He takes Glow to the bathroom where she makes the water nice and hot. On that day we are told young Dom has a wonderful bath! Unfortunately, Glow just keeps on growing. So Dom moves the dragon somewhere in the kitchen. The next day all the food and plates are nice and warm. Young Dom and his little sister enjoy a wonderful warm meal.
Sadly for Dom, Glow just keeps on growing. She is now too big to hide around the house. So Dom is forced to come clean and tell his mum about Dom. The mother decides immediately to take Dom and the dragon to the King. The King is afraid of the Dragon, but when Dom tells him Glow makes everything nice and warm, the King decides to put Glow to good use. He makes a big house for the Dragon. It has big pipes which pump hot water to every house. Everyone’s quality of life improves. They have warm baths everyday and warm food. Everyone is so happy that the King decides to host a BBQ party on nice warm plates thanks to the hot dragon Glow.
One of the lessons of Dom’s Dragon is that it is better to be honest with our problems because our problems may not be as bad as we think! By Dom admitting he had a dragon to his mum, in the end what seemed like a problem he could not manage proved to be a blessing for everyone. The authors are encouraging our children not to be afraid of sharing problems or mistakes. Every mistake is an opportunity for us to learn from it, grow and benefit other people.
The story may also be interpreted as a subtle warning to all of us that we cannot hide our problems forever. Sooner or later we will be found out. So let us share them so that others may help us carry our burden. As the Bible says, A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. [Proverbs 17:17]. Having good friends is central in overcoming life’s difficulties:
But there is a twist to the story at the end that even points us to a large meaning for all of us. As the town is enjoying having the Dragon, we are told: “But one day, Dom saw three little eggs”. In the book, the expression on Dom’s face says it all. He is shocked as he now realises that soon the town will have a big problem on their hands! It is not just Dom who is shocked. We expect the story to end with, “and they lived happily thereafter”, as all children stories do.
The ending of the story reveals something we know in life. The world we live in is broken. Our longing for a happily thereafter never comes. So why then do we still long for it? The reason is that there was a time when we had a happily thereafter. When God created us in Eden. The Bible says God created us perfect in the Garden of Eden! We lived truly fulfilled lives of love and peace with God and one another. But sadly, our first parents rebelled against God. Since then all their descendants are born emotionally, physically and spiritually damaged! We all sense this fallen in us. Our lives are now an endless quest to find that happily thereafter. We are longing for true love and fulfilment.
The good news of the Bible is that God is on a mission to restore our happily thereafter. Our longing for this world to be made right is partly an echo of a promise made to us by God in the garden of Eden. In Genesis 3, the Bible tells us that our first parents rebelled against God. They were led astray by serpent, an instrument of Satan. The consequence of our rebellion is that God cursed the human race. But he also promised us one day He will make things right. God promised that an offspring, some special person, will do battle with our enemy Satan, at cost to himself will defeat Satan for humanity! This offspring of Eve is the Lord Jesus who came and crushed Satan on the Cross to free us from the tyranny of sin, Satan, death and Hell.
Jesus is God who has put on our human flesh to die for our sin on the cross. The death of Jesus His death has destroyed the wall of sin that separates man from God by suffering the punishment we deserve. Jesus died to restore and reconcile us back to God. All who trust in Jesus have now received a new life of joy and peace with God forever through the death and resurrection of Jesus. But the full blessing of this new life will only be seen once our Lord Jesus appears for the second time to make all things new and live physically with us forever! The happily thereafter that all of us are long and groan for is coming. Jesus is coming to establish a new world without sin and suffering.
Copyright © Chola Mukanga 2020