I recently read a statement from A.W. Tozer that more or less said something along these lines. Who you are, as well as where you are going (spiritually speaking), can be answered by this mere question, “what comes to mind when you think of God?”
The question and statement posed was in regards to how big or small we view God. It shows if we truly grasp (or wish to grasp) how large and how impactful He is for us in our lives. It was an interesting point, needless to say. But it left me considering something else entirely. How do we view God? I mean, what attributes and characteristics do we conjure up about Him in our small minds? For many, we are quick to see a kindly grandfatherly figure who lets you sit on his knee, takes you fishing, or winks at you as He passes you a 10-dollar bill for no reason whatsoever. For others, we are quick to see the tyrant. The one who is stern, unforgiving, and who encompasses everything we deem wrong with our least favorite political figure, all wrapped into one persona.
I am not here to necessarily go and determine what is wrong (or perhaps right) regarding those assumptions. All I wanted to convey is that there is one description of Him that has always given me a bit of whiplash. This occurrence can be found in Psalm 2:1-4, where it states, “Why are the nations in an uproar and the peoples devising a vain thing? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers take counsel together…He who sits in the heavens laughs, the Lord scoffs at them.” All I’m saying is this, viewing God in laughter is far and away NOT my initial expectation. Perhaps that’s due to watching Robert Powell play the role of Christ in the TV epic Jesus of Nazareth at a young age. Where Powell encompasses the catholic and renaissance-esque interpretation of Christ, where He is usually pictured as distant and melancholy. And while the context of the verse (which will be significant in a bit) is picturing a furious and vengeful God, it still surprises me to see a description of my Creator laughing.
But this really shouldn’t be a surprise to us. Especially when you think of what the writer (David) is describing, which will later be a prophetic description of God and Christ. In the book of Hebrews, we are told that this psalm is referring to how the nations wish to tear apart the Anointed One (Christ). How, in their minds, they have successfully slayed the Son of God. But as we know, what the people were doing was merely helping fulfill the prophecy that the Christ was to come to this earth for all, die for the sins of all, and rise again as ruler of all (vs. 7-8). You can then understand why our Father in Heaven can’t help but laugh at the stupidity of, well…us.
What use is any of this anyways? Well, ultimately, since this is the same God who watches, roots for, and helps us in our own lives, it stands to reason He has had the same reaction toward us. While there will be many challenges, tragedies, or other versions of stumps in the road we will face. There will undoubtedly be those particular times, as we have already pictured, in which He will mourn with us, be vengeful for us, but perhaps, He will also laugh at us. We need to understand that just like our own earthly figures of fathers, our Father will sit back and watch as we try to get ourselves out of a mess we’ve made, or while we are strongly fighting the very blessings He has been leading us towards. In the end, Psalm 2 shows a picture of an Almighty Figure who knows far more than anything we can ever conceive. He understands that the difficulties we face, or even the things we fight, will lead us to a place where He ultimately wishes us to be. No matter what difficulty, uncertainty, or challenge you are facing, choose to lean upon the One who knows all, and pray that you’ll be willing to go and do what He wishes from you. Also, maybe learn to laugh along the way, it does wonders…
P.S. the picture has really nothing to do with the topic (aside for laughing), it just amused me is all. Also, go listen to the fabulous Florence and the Machine’s new song Too Much Is Never Enough and her cover of Stand By Me.