In my discussions about the painting of Jesus break dancing , much has been paid of making Jesus in our own image and that he would never participate in the ways of this world. Similar discussions have taken place regarding the comparisons between Jesus and Superman in light of new movie Man of Steel . Many distance Jesus from such things, citing that Jesus was not of this world and he was separate from the ways of it, focusing on the differences.
He may have been separate but he didn’t simply direct traffic lofting up on this throne out of reach. Jesus came down to us and got his hands dirty, something the Pharisees would never stoop to doing so. He had dinner with tax collectors and spent time with lepers and outcasts. He wept with Mary at Lazarus’s grave. He experienced what we do and that’s the whole point. Maybe he wouldn’t be break dancing or enjoying a glass of wine, but if you think he would then so what? The relationship has always been what has mattered to God. If seeing Jesus like Superman helps, then it helps. It may not be 100% theologically accurate but as I’ve said before, if it gets you over a hurdle between you and God, do you think he’s bothered? When the heavens are renewed, will Jesus be on the sidelines whilst the party happens? Or will he come and join in and raise a glass to his father? When it comes to artistic expression, there aren’t really any set ways.
In my life I know what he has done. He reached down into the darkness that was my life and grabbed me. I don’t always feel like I’ve been totally pulled up, but when I look up I see him. He’s not holding onto a rope, he’s holding onto me. In the torrent of doubt I hold onto him, doubts about whether I’m doing what he wants, doubts over whether I’m supporting those who he needs me to, doubts over whether I’m saved because I’m still struggling with past issues. I make mistakes, I face battles, I struggle along in this life; but Jesus helps me over the hurdles and embraces me as a son no matter the result. People will say I’m not holding onto him I’m holding onto an image of him, I can say the same about them it doesn’t determine who is correct. Perhaps I do take it too far sometimes, make Jesus to be too much like us and downplay how he was not of this world, but a Jesus who is totally separate from the world is unreachable. If he is unreachable, how I can grab him? How can he change my life?
Jesus can be Superman, Batman, a break dancer, a raver; he can be all those things. Most of all, he’s a father and a saviour.
First published 17th June 2013