The Bible is swollen with visions of a Holy and terrifying God. Images abound of fiery fury being poured out on unrepentant nations, wrath on recalcitrant Kings and unwilling spokespersons. Indeed some of the prophetic visions are positively seething with apocalyptic fury. Can you feel the eschatological tremors?
And God remains the eternal, and feared, Great Judge with a gnarled, crooked finger parting the clouds, just waiting for another human who “doesn’t get it” to step out of line to teach her a thing or two about justice …
One day I took off my glasses to read, to see what I’ve been looking at and yet not seeing. What began to come into focus was startling. I caught glimpses of a new face to God. I was blindsided by flashes of a cheeky grin, veiled by heavenly majesty, and a giggle that tickles through the earth-shattering thunder.
Indeed there are times where God’s sense of humour must be veiled. In the depths of our sadness, pain and confusion, to look heavenward and see that kind of joy would seem cruel. And yet it is there, written gracefully with joy and hope.
Have you met the God who laughs?
I’m not sure I have just yet, but I’d like to. I like the idea that amidst the divine interventions, the “holding-all-things-together-by-the-power-of-the-Word” and the last minute answers to fervent, sweat-soaked midnight prayers, God laughs. In glorious majesty, God grabs at eternal sides and keels over in hearty joy – cosmic cackling!
Someone once described Christians as “nice people in a bad mood.”
If the world and everything in it is God’s, and if God is still interested in the ongoing creative work of upholding and directing all that is, then perhaps there is still cause for hope. Perhaps we can relax our white-knuckled grip on everything. Perhaps we can breathe a little deeper and move a little slower and listen a little less selfishly. Perhaps we might even laugh with reckless abandon with a God who would see to it that the account of Balaam’s Ass talking would make the Old Testament.
The offence of the divine comedy is that although we know how the story ends, we’re not home yet. But God does know how it ends, and it is coming together just as planned.
Dig Deeper: Romans 8:27-29
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