Shades of Gray

Posted by Dion Todd March 12th, 2015 15,011 Views 0 Comments

For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look at Him! A glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Luke 7:33–34 ESV

There was a melancholy feeling that settled over us when we entered the sanctuary. Everyone was somber with long faces like they were in mourning, but it was not a funeral. The paintings of Jesus on the wall made Him look depressed and sad. It was cold, it was quiet, and it was gray. Yet when I read the Bible, I could not help but think “we are missing something.”

Jesus lived a colorful life, a full human life. He laughed with people, He loved people, He wept over people. Jesus fasted often, but at other times, He ate well. He gave His disciples nicknames like the “Sons of Thunder” (Mark 3:17). He rejoiced in the Holy Spirit (Luke 10:21). The kingdom of God is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17) and I believe that Jesus walked in that realm. The joy of the Lord is our strength (Neh 8:10) and I believe that Jesus was strong in joy.

Martin Luther the great reformer, became a monk and wore himself out with prayer and fasting, and his superiors with his confessions, yet it gave him no peace. One day he found true grace, left monkery, married a nun and changed the known world. He raised ten children and concluded that "marriage is a far better school for character than any monastery."

The Lord wants you to live a full life. There will be times of laughing, and times of weeping. There will be times of fasting, and there will be times of feasting. We will be born, and we will probably die. Allow room for joy in your life and balance the drudgery. Don’t allow cold, dead religion to sap the joy from your life. God created sunshine.

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