Why God smiles

By Dave Henning / October 14, 2012

A sketch of Jesus laughing hangs on the wall opposite Max Lucado’s (In the Eye of the Storm) desk.  He was given the sketch by an Episcopal priest who collects portraits of Jesus smiling and gives them “to anyone who might be inclined to take God too seriously.”

Max applies this image of Jesus to the Biblical account of “The Faith of the Canaanite Woman” (Mathew 15:21-28).  When the woman, whose daughter was demon-possessed, asked Jesus to have mercy on her, Jesus’ immediate response was silence.  While Max notes that most commentators suggest that Jesus was testing the woman to see how serious she was, Max personally believes that Jesus was admiring her for her spunky faith.  Similarly, the author interprets the ensuing dialogue as satirical banter between Jesus and the woman, a “wry exchange in which God’s grace is being highlighted”- where a willing Jesus delights in a sincere seeker.

A ministry downsizing or position loss has devastating spiritual, emotional and professional ramifications.  It’s serious business, not to be trivialized by cliched responses or quick-fix solutions.  However, have you ever considered that, as you begin your journey toward healing and ministry revisioning by God’s grace, Jesus is smiling at you?



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Dave Henning

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