Monday, April 20, 2015

Junk Drawers and the Man of Sorrows - Is there a correlation?

This week I read a blog in which the author described his mind as a junk drawer. I didn't have to ask, "Really?" I understood. Then, I took a minute to look in my "proverbial junk drawer," and yes, that is reflective of mine, as well.

I thought about labeling it (for warning's sake); or, come up with some cute quote about it: "Your mind is only as tidy as your junk drawer." "Open at your own risk." It's amazing what I find in the junk drawer...keys (I have no idea what they unlock, but, I have them just in case I remember where they go); lip ointment (how long has it been in here and should I take a chance, or possibly end up with an unidentified lip fungus); screws of random sizes (why aren't they in what my husband calls his man cave, but is really a junk closet); luggage tags; batteries; best of all there's this (I may have little IDEA what it is, but I have one, if I need it):

This is highly indicative of my random mind. So, with this said, for whatever reason, in the midst of all this reading, and looking up verses, and thinking about, JOY, I found myself humming this hymn:
Man of Sorrows what a name
For the Son of God who came
Ruined sinners to reclaim
Hallelujah! What a Savior! 

Why would that come to mind in the middle of all this purposeful longing for JOY? Then came this question, "Does that name (from Isaiah 53:3) reflect my Jesus completely?" Do I tend to think of Him only in these terms? Was He only sorrowful, or did He resonate the kind of JOY I'm looking for in my life, as well?

I have a picture hanging on my wall. I love this picture. It has traveled with us to Africa and back; well, it has gone every where we have moved over the course of the last 41 years of marriage. It's called The Laughing Jesus. Recently, I heard a story about a similar picture, published in the January edition of a 1970 Playboy magazine. Hefner had been so taken by the idea that Jesus laughed, he published an article (For Christ's Sake), and the picture, printed, caused all manner of controversy (I can only imagine in the 70's). The point was Heffner couldn't fathom Jesus laughing. What a sad indictment, not just on his flawed view of Jesus, but on the image of Christ we portray.

Of course, Jesus was a Man of Sorrows: He wept over sinners, and greatly desired those He came to seek and save to KNOW Him; His passion was GREAT for lost things to be found, and He grieved over unbelief. Yet, even though He struggled with legalism and longed for loving relationship; and while it angered Him that the temple was turned from worship to business, all the while, I just KNOW that He was a man of joy. Remember, the two can run parallel in our lives at all times.

I believe my Jesus was so full of joy, He was attractive and drew a crowd. Why would anyone be drawn to sorrow - and people were drawn to Him like metal to a magnet? I believe He wasn't just invited to parties (weddings, the feasts of sinners), but He could be the life of the party. It's my opinion, He wasn't showy in personality, yet humbly exhibited such gratitude, that it spilled out of Him as joy. As a mentor, I think He must have been a lot of fun...I don't think life on the road with Jesus was just teaching 24-7. Don't you know they laughed...a lot (with someone like impulsive Peter around sticking foot-in-mouth, I can just imagine the deep belly laughing)! Speaking of teaching, I have come to think that the humor in His messages has often been lost in translation and across the distance of time, as well as, culture. I imagine His crowd often chuckled at His exaggerated metaphors...

Those are just opinions. Yet, as a younger Christian, it seemed I took that one verse and it became my mind set alone... My perceived story (my twisted story, actually) was that Jesus was a Man of Sorrows because He was disappointed with me. If, for some reason, He were to come, once again, and physically sit across from me, the look on His face would be one of sorrow with me. I just didn't measure up, or do the Christian life quite well enough. My mental junk drawer was filled with such useless, not true, garbage. 

What else does Scripture teach us? Jesus, Himself, said, "I tell you these things that my joy might be in you...and that it would be FULL!" HIS JOY. Why would I want His joy if He was just a Man of Sorrows? Then, there's Paul's famous passage in Galatians regarding the fruit of the Spirit. Number two on the list is joy. Jesus perfectly portrayed each of these nine. Fruit, the refreshing fruit of joy, is delightful to those we rub shoulders with, making them desirous of the Kingdom. Of course, Jesus was joy-full!

But the Scripture that connected the most - Hebrews 12:2..."who for the joy set before Him endured the shame..."  What joy? You. Me. I was Jesus' joy as He endured shame and death. The more He looked down the road and kept me (I'll make this personal) in view, the greater His joy grew. Fulness of joy. What a thought...I am the joy of Jesus. Thinking of me kept Him steadily marching toward the cross (voluntarily, I might add).

I find it so ironic...Jesus kept His eyes on me and found joy.
I keep my eyes on Jesus and I'll discover the same...especially, when my focus is on the Man of Joy.

Where are you gazing? 


#lessonsonjoy: That Jesus was simply a Man of Sorrows is just a myth; He was, indeed, our role model of joy as a Man of Joy. Learning to dispel the myths about Jesus allows me to discover even more joy.

#lessonsonjoy: When I remember that I am the joy of Jesus, He becomes my only source for joy.

#lessonsonjoy: The more my eyes are on Jesus, the greater my joy!

#lessonsonjoy: Harboring myths and lies only lead me away from the joy I desire.

#lessonsonjoy: I may need to clean out my junk drawer...

No comments:

Post a Comment