Saturday, January 3, 2009

sitting on the throne

I was reminiscing today about my holiday in Europe. My friend and I spent six weeks swanning around Germany, France, Italy and England, shopping, sightseeing and enjoying being a very obvious tourist (maps + camera = Aussie out of water).

Whilst in Germany we travelled to Munich and went to visit Schloss Neushweinstein. Basically, it's a castle. You may know it from such films as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and the puzzle in the back of your wardrobe. It's a famous castle, built by some famous king in the foothills of the German Alps. It's beautiful, it's decadent and it's extravagent.

Of course, the day we decided to visit the castle the buses weren't operating which meant for a very long, very tiring trek up the side of the mountain to get to the castle. But that's an aside. Once at the top, we were ushered through the castle. The guide began telling us the story of the king who built the castle, saying that it took years to build the castle and longer to decorate inside it. In fact, it took so long that the king died during the process and the castle was never finished.

Despite this, the rooms that we were allowed in were, needless to say, fit for a king. Golden this and golden that. Wooden carvings and statues, paintings, lavish fabrics...stunning.

Until we entered the Throne Room.

Paintings like I had never seen covered every inch of the ceiling and walls. Gold was in abundance, colours so beautiful you felt like crying. I should've put out a search warrant for my breath because it was taken away by how magnificent the room was.

Yet something wasn't right. It was empty.

Crazy? Yes. There were people there, or course it wasn't empty.

The king wasn't there? Of course not, he was dead long ago.

So what was it?

A throne room suggests, well, a throne, right? That's what was missing. How bizarre? A throne room with no throne?

What exactly is a throne? Well, it's where the king sits and rules from, makes decisions, does this and that. Basically, it's where the king is king.

But this castle, in all it's extravagence, had no throne. That makes me sad. The king never actually ruled from this particular castle because it took so long to build and then he died. So this throne room never saw the king be king.

Are you seeing what I'm getting at?

I don't ever want my life to resemble that castle. A throne room with no throne, a castle with no king. That was the saddest room I have ever been in. In all the majesty and splendor, there was no room for the king, nowhere for him to sit and be king.

This is probably the part where I say, 'Who is sitting on the throne is your life?'. Wow, tacky Christian-ese. But in all seriousness, you can be sure that my life won't look like Schloss Neuschweinstein!

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