1 Peter 1:8 You never saw him, yet you love him. You still don’t see him, yet you trust him—with laughter and singing. (The Message)
After I met Jesus years ago, I remember being told about an older prominent Christian by the name of Rufus Moseley. Apparently he had a great deal of joy and for some strange reason some church people had a problem with that. One old dour-faced Christian came up to him and sourly asked, “Do you think Jesus ever smiled?” Rufus looked at her, grinned and answered, “I don’t know, but He sure fixed it so I can!”
I love to think of Jesus smiling and laughing. I’m so grateful for paintings I’ve seen where the artist has presented Him doing so. Then there’s Johnny Cash’s film Gospel Road that has such wonderful scenes of Jesus laughing and smiling with the disciples and children.
There’s also a production called The Thorn that began in Colorado Springs about 20 years ago that is very similar to The Passion of the Christ. It tells the story of Jesus, and the violence done to Him is vividly represented. But this serious production also presents Jesus as a man who smiled and expressed such joy when the miracles were performed and in times with His disciples.
Think of Jesus healing crippled children and their stunned and ecstatic response. Can’t you just see the incredible joy in His face as He performed these wonders? Can’t you just see these children running to Jesus and jumping in His arms, squealing with delight! Think of His face and the utter joy it would express.
This is our Lord. This is the One we live with and for. The Amplified Bible presents today’s verse this way: ‘Without having seen Him, you love Him; though you do not [even] now see Him, you believe in Him and exult and thrill with inexpressible and glorious (triumphant, heavenly) joy.’ Oh my goodness, there are times when the wonder of what we have in Jesus is so overwhelming I pinch myself. It just seems too good to be true. Hopefully you regularly have such moments of wonder too.