consider the dancing Jesus
In my journey of faith I have come to discover Jesus on a very personal level, one of His humanity as much as (and sometimes more than) His divinity. For many Christians this is a challenge, seeing the humanity of Jesus beyond His Almighty character. We need a Savior, we need a powerful Redeemer whom we cannot equate with our own human selves. And though I, too, can wrap my arms around that vision of my Savior, I have learned that His character as he lived a human life is the best way for me to relate to God.
In His humanity, Jesus was challenged in every way that I am challenged. He had the same emotions, the same temptations, the same irritations and disappointments that I have in my own life. He did not always like the actions of the people around him, and He didn’t enjoy every single moment of every single day. His life was filled with the same human struggles and same opportunities that we face in our current age. He was acquainted with all the same grief. The Bible tells us that Jesus wept when a friend had died, wept at the despair of those he loved. He cried over Israel and how they would not listen to his message from God. But he also laughed and played and celebrated and danced. Yes, danced. And it is this man that I’ve found easiest to embrace as Savior. It is these qualities that make Him a friend to me.
I began exploring the human aspects of Jesus when my own pastor made the statement, “Consider the dancing Jesus.” He was pointing out that the Jewish heritage of Jesus’s human life would have brought him opportunities to celebrate, and He would not have chosen to do anything other than what was tradition. Like dancing at a wedding. In my mind, Jesus became more human than ever before. And I began to study some of the customs of the Hebrew nation to better understand just how Jesus lived in his 33 years on earth. Knowing these things about Him allows me to relate to Him. As a woman who struggles with her own humanity, I often feel far from God, that my failure to achieve the excellence He desires in me has kept me from being as close to God as I hope to be. But as I consider that Jesus was human, that He experienced the physical separation from His father, I am able to let myself off the hook and worship the God who accepts me as I am.
Though Jesus never gave in to the overwhelming emotions and situations that cause us to sin daily, I know that He can still relate to my humanity. And I love to consider the many aspects of my life that He also experienced. Like relationships with his friends, with his family, and most especially with his mother. And then I think on how those people considered Jesus. Mary, for one, treasured Him dearly from before his birth, even. Those relationships, which I understand fully, are key to my understanding of Jesus and the Sacrifice He made for us. To love those people so much, with a human love greater than we can ever comprehend, and then to watch them suffer while he was beaten and tortured and nailed upon a cross, must have been as painful for him as the physical wounds. To know, further, that He had my name and my face in His mind during the brutal ordeal makes His suffering all the more personal and His humanity all the more embraceable.
My friend Cerella sent me a video this week that speaks of this very humanity. Using images and a song from The Passion of the Christ, the video focuses entirely on Jesus’s awareness of his mother’s pain, of his friends’ despair. Consider His humanity as you watch the images and listen to the lyrcis. And consider the life He led before those final hours. He knows our struggles, He knows our joy, and He certainly knows our humiliation and our pain. And still He chose to die a brutal death so that His story would be written and His victory over death, His resurrection from the dead, would testify to all that has been written about the Most High God. He chose to become human so that I would know Him and through Him would come to know God. Without Jesus, I have no hope. But because of Him, because of a life I can understand and to which I can relate, I have embraced redemption through Him. I am assured that I will one day be in heaven standing before the Father. And on that day I will celebrate with Jesus. Probably even dance.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
|Read more about the customs of ancient
Jewish weddings and how they foretell of
our own lives with Christ.