Well, surprisingly it really does. Here is this elephant, this great kind giant who one day hears a sound. 'A faint yelp, like someone crying for help. He sees a small speck, too small for an elephant's eyes. But he'll just have to save him, after all, a person's a person, no matter how small.' What a wonderful, simple picture of what Jesus did for us. God, this great kind giant hears the sound of His people. Crying for help, crying for a Saviour. They were small and insignificant, but He loved them. Jew and Gentile alike; He'll just have to save them all, after all a person's a person...
So, just as Horton stretches out his long trunk to catch that small speck of dust, God stretches out His great hand and sends His Son Jesus. Poor Horton meets nay-sayers along the way, a sour kangaroo and her young kangaroo. 'A person on that, why there never has been...I think you're a fool!' They seek to destroy that speck of dust and Horton says, 'I've got to protect them, I'm bigger than they.' Jesus came to protect us, to save us from him who would destroy us. He was so much bigger, so much greater than we. But He also was mocked and vilified for believing that He could save us, and more importantly, that we were worth saving. He spoke against the Pharisees and those who put burdens on the people. He had come that we might be saved by grace, not by the works that so many believed could save them. Not by being crushed by the burdensome laws that were placed on the backs of the people, but saved by those stripes that were placed on His back, by those nails that pierced His hands and feet, by that crushing death.
Just like the Pharisees and those 'religious' men, Horton deals with those sour kangaroos as they say, 'You've run wild and insisted on chatting with persons who never existed. I'm here to say that your silly game is totally through...you're going to be roped and your going to be caged. As for your dust speck, Ha! that we shall boil in a hot steaming kettle of beezle nut oil.' Horton was beaten, his fool's errand nothing but folly. And so thought those wicked men who betrayed Jesus, who carried Him off to be beaten and crucified. They thought they had won, that the great hope of the people was now buried in the dark and would be forgotten. Jesus was dead and His disciples and His followers would all continue on their inevitable journey to hell. Oh, how wrong they were. He broke free from the confines of death, He conquered hell and made the way for the captive to be set free. His resurrection negated the words of the nay-sayers. His believing in us made the way for us to believe in Him. He, the great kind God believed in us when we were sinners, when we had no love for Him. He believed, He had faith that we would see the greatness of His sacrifice and would respond to that selfless act. That blows my mind. This God, who created everything; the universe, stars, the sun and moon, mountains, trees, flowers, everything on this speck of dust that we call home, He loves us! Just chew on that a moment. How can that not bring tears to your eyes? I know I write about this a lot, but I think we don't realize the magnitude of it all. I think we often take for granted what He did for us, and what He continues to do for us.
As Horton carries off that speck of dust on that soft piece of clover, He hears a voice speaking. It is the mayor, who says they are called Whos and that they live in Who-ville. And he tells Horton, 'we Whos are thankful and grateful to you.' Horton replies, 'You're safe now, don't worry, I won't let you down. After all a person's a person, no matter how small.' And Horton ends up saving the Whos, all because they cried for help. All it took was one small 'yopp'. Don't you see, what it takes to receive this beautiful gift of salvation, this freedom that He has to offer is not getting yourself clean. It is not yours by being a good person, a kind person. It is not yours by doing so many good deeds today. It is not yours by not cursing, not lying, not stealing. God loves you now, even when you do all that. It is yours by saying, just as the Whos said, 'we are here.' God just wants you to say, Jesus, I am here. No fancy prayer, no great speech. Just a yopp. Just an "I believe, Jesus". Those Whos in Who-ville were saved by Horton because he had the ears to hear their cry. He had the trunk to reach out and grab them and carry them to safety. He had the faith to believe that they existed and that they deserved saving, after all a person's a person, no matter how small.
Just so, Jesus came to save us. He had the ears to hear our cry before we even thought to cry it out. He had that strong back to carry that cross for us. He had the faith to believe that we would receive that gift of salvation that He offered and He has the grace to give it to us when we cry out for help. We are not Whos, we are Whose. And while they lived in Who-ville, we live on this tiny speck of dust called Whose-ville.
All quotes are from Horton Hears a Who by Dr. Seuss