This past Sunday I preached on the parable of the servants and talents. Without rehashing my sermon, my conclusion was that how you interpret this parable is largely based on how you view God. If you see God as an angry harsh God, waiting to hit you over the head with a lightning bolt when you mess up, there is no way we can or should risk using the gifts we have been given. The consequences of a mistake are too great. If you believe in a God who is loving and caring then there is really no risk at all. The only risk involved is in not using those gifts we have been given.
As we’re are heading toward spring there is another image of God that comes to my mind; a playful God. This past fall Ellen and moved into a new condo. One of the things I really like about the place is that it overlooks at pond that attracts a lot of water fowl. This past week there has been a great of “playful” activity with the ducks and the geese chasing each other around the pond. It’s fun watching God’s creation being playful.
I also remember another image of God being playful. The image comes from C.S. Lewis’s The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Aslan has just come back to life after being killed. The land is in peril, war is raging and followers are dying. A dire moment. But what does Aslan do at this moment, he decides to play a game of tag with the children. “I feel my strength coming back to me. Oh children, catch me if can!” Aslan then takes them on a joy-filled chase through the hills until they, “collapse in a happy laughing heap of fur and arms and legs. It was such a romp as no one ever had except in Narnia.”
There have been times, when things felt difficult, when this scene, has caused me to pause and smile. I remember that I am a creation of a God, who in difficult times, can still find time to laugh and romp and play. I then believe it is time to follow God’s example.
What is your favorite image of God?