One of my favorite scenes from The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies is the very first one—the suspenseful sequence which witnesses Bard, a humble man and selfless father, slaying Smaug, a ruthless dragon who has long terrorized Laketown.
Of course, from a cinematic standpoint it’s an exciting piece. Incredible music, masterful suspense, and in many other ways quite the start to the thrilling final installment of Tolkien’s beloved book.
But that isn’t why I like it so much.
I like it because it’s incredibly reassuring.
What is more reassuring than a reminder that if we want everything to turn out for the best, all we have to do is look right into God’s eyes, trust him and be?
That’s exactly the picture Peter Jackson set up—whether he intended to or not—when he filmed the dramatic death of Smaug.
Bard is like God—a humble and selfless father—willing to risk everything to keep his own. Each of us is like Bain, Bard’s son, standing between God and the immense evils that surround us, often paralyzed with fear.
God understands the terror. In fact, he knows it far better than we do, so he doesn’t allow us to look. Instead, God acts exactly as a loving father would, repeating his wise yet simple instructions: “Stay still, son…Look at me.”
Look. At. Me.
All we have to do is keep our eyes intently on God, trusting any instructions he gives us—and over our very shoulders, he slays our dragons.
Perhaps even more incredibly, we are allowed to partake in the victory merely by being. He doesn’t ask us to aim the arrow, to pull back the bow, or even to call the shot.
Look. At. Me.
All we need to do is stand firm, eyes on Christ. Because of our faith we have been saved—and then, before we know it, it is finished.