This heart-warming story took place in 2006 in north east Canada. The indigenous Inuit people were very upset with the white Canadian community. There had been a lot of ill-feeling and 'argy bargy' between the two communities. The Inuit were very unhappy about the poor stewardship of their traditional hunting lands. They blamed the white Canadian community.
The Inuit began to humble themselves and repent for the bitterness and rage they felt towards the white settlers. And the white posse joined in. They decided to take communion together and there was a lot of repentance and forgiveness was freely shared.
Two days later 15,000 caribou turned up at the precise place where the communion service had taken place. Everyone in the nearby town got to hear about this 'nature' miracle. The Inuit have also seen whales coming back after these 'healing the land' ceremonies.
Application of the story
This story helps us to understand the liberating power of the death of Jesus. When we take communion we are reminding ourselves that Jesus lived and died in our place. Study Mark 14:22-25.
Further to this the kingdom of God can bring healing and reconciliation not only to individual believers but to entire communities and even to the animal kingdom. The gospel of King Jesus brings forgiveness and healing to the entire creation. Mark helped us to understand this when he wrote that – Jesus said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation." (Mark 16:15).
Worldview and the story
How might the caribou answer the five big questions? Their 'answer' helps us to understand more about the gospel of the kingdom.
Where are we?
We are living in God’s most bodacious world. It's a cracker. Our close friends the reindeer agree with us that the Lord has provided us with delicious grass and superb drinking water.
Who are we?
We are posh deer and we sport impressive antlers. We are ruminants and we normally eat lichens, sedges and grasses. We have no interest in poetry or philosophy.
What's gone wrong?
The creatures called human-beings who were supposed to look after us and keep us in line have rebelled against the Lord. It's all gone pear-shaped.
What's the solution?
The reindeer who are brighter than us have told us that King Jesus has arrived and has proclaimed His kingdom rule. If humans get in line and obey him, things will get much better both for us and the entire creation.
What will happen to us after we die?
Frankly we don't know but we are confident that when heaven comes down to earth (Revelation 21) our enemies the wolves will be buddies with the lambs and that can't be all bad.