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Love and Sacrifice




Last night I spent the evening watching Tim Buton's "Through the Looking Glass" with my children. I had never read the book as a child, so this is all I have to go on. There is a scene towards the end, after Alice has returned from Wonderland and after she has learned all of her lessons and after she is a very different Alice from the Alice she was before she entered Wonderland. In this scene she is faced with a choice. In order to save her mother's house, she must give up her late father's ship. The man presenting her with this decision is the man whom Alice decided not to marry. I shall call him Hamish. Either way, Alice is punished for her "No."


In the beginning of the story, we have Alice's triumphant return from a voyage taken on her father's behalf. Her father had owned a shipping company, and he had passed before his work was finished. Upon her return, her mother tells her that it is time to become a proper lady, to settle down, and to find a husband. It has all been arranged. The ship will be signed away to pay for the lean against the house. Hamish had bought Alice's share of the company as well. Hamish will provide her with a clerk's position, and that is that. (This tidbit tells the viewers Hamish had been very cruel to Alice's mother while Alice was away.)


During her time in Wonderland, Alice learns that family is all that matters. She can always get another ship and another house for that matter, but she could never replace her mother. She comes home and tells her mother to sign the documents. She would even work for Hamish as a clerk, so he can be cruel to her instead of her mother. She simply loved her mother.


Her mother saw this change in Alice, and she decided she would not waste this love on a victory for Hamish. Let him keep the house! Let him keep everything! She had Alice, and they had a ship. They could start a new shipping business as competition for Hamish and drive his company into the ground within the month. A woman stepping out of the home to run a shipping business was not within the bounds of propriety, but that did not make it wrong. It make it new. New can be scary, and new can be exciting.


All because they were willing to give up everything for the other.


This is My commandment: love one another as I have loved you. No one can have greater love than to lay down his life for his friends. Jn 15: 12-13

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