It was a sunny, cool, spring day. Perfect weather to visit Sydney’s Taronga zoo by the harbour. My friend, Lisa, and I are both animal lovers and we were very keen to go and enjoy the variety of animals at this world class zoo. My favourite animals are giraffes and meerkats. Lisa’s favourite animal is the lion. As we studied the map of the zoo we worked towards a plan of winding our way around the zoo heading early on past the giraffes, stopping at the seal show, the bird show, heading past the meerkats until we were finally in the Big Cats section of the zoo. With the cool weather we were hoping the animals would be playful and easily seen. With much pleasure we toured slowly past koalas, chimpanzees, elephants, penguins and a variety of other animals. The day was warming up slightly when we finally made it to the Big Cats section. Here we could view tigers, snow leopards and the lions. Lisa was so excited. We left the main walkway and followed the pathway into the Big Cats area. Gazing into the lion yard we could clearly see through the glass, several tawny toned lionesses sunning themselves sleepily. We took photos and spent some time enjoying them. We wondered where the lion was and we looked hopefully through the foliage to catch a glimpse of him, but to no avail. We decided to move on and come back again later. As we continued around the zoo we were getting tired and worn out. We had a walked a long way. It was now getting closer to the time when we would leave, so we decided to head back to the lions. I left Lisa on the main pathway and told her I would follow the footpath into the Big Cats area and if I saw the lion I would come back and get her. That way Lisa could rest a few minutes and not have to walk excessively. As I came to the lion cage I was very excited. There just several metres away was a magnificent lion sleeping in the sun. Tiredness was all forgotten. I started running and calling out, “Lisa!!!!” Suddenly her tiredness was erased from her mind and body and together we hurried in anticipation back to the lion cage. There sprawling in splendour was the lion. We were struck with awe at his beauty and as we watched he started to move. He slowly sat up. In his full regal magnificence he looked fully at Lisa. He was spectacular to behold. He was resplendent in his noble and kingly bearing. His colouring was a rich golden brown and his impressive mane held a variety of hues from flaxen to black. The joy of that moment in time has been imprinted on our souls.
The lion is a glorious animal, a symbol throughout history and folklore of power, courage and nobility. The Bible uses this symbol of the lion to represent Jesus.
- Rev 5:4,5 Then I began to weep greatly because no one was found worthy to open the book or to look into it; and one of the elders said to me, “Stop weeping; behold, the Lion that is from the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has overcome so as to open the book and its seven seals.”
- The Bible says that Jesus is King of Kings in Revelation 19:16 “… He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”
- As a king Christ will one day end this world of suffering and sin and set up an eternal kingdom of peace and righteousness.
- As I ponder the kingship and authority of Jesus I am called to question my own heart. Is Jesus King of my life? Does He have sole authority to which I surrender myself in love and adoration to His reigning goodness? Is *self* still on the throne of my heart?Am I trying to co-reign with Jesus? Am I fully surrendered in all areas of my life to my Lord and My King?
- “Lord, thank you that You created me and gave me life. You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I praise You for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are your works and that my soul knows very well. I praise You that I was created for good things. Help me to be renewed in the image of You, my creator. I know You made me to be so much more than I am now and that You will help me become all You created me to be. Thank you Jesus, that You are the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.Lord, You are King and Lord over all my life. I surrender everything I have to You because I recognize that every good thing I have has been given to me by You as a sign of your goodness, mercy, and love. Thank you that You are my provider and You provide everything I need.” A Book of Prayer p153 by Stormie Omartian