Our Bible verse for today: “The streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in them.” Zechariah 8:5 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “It’s okay to play”
One of the books I’m currently reading is called “The Circle” by Ted Dekker. It’s actually a series of fiction novels similar to “The Chronicles of Narnia” by C.S. Lewis. However it’s also similar to the “This Present Darkness” series by Frank Peritti because the story unfolds in two dimensions simultaneously – one dimension is the world as we know it and the other world is similar to that of Lewis’s Narnia – and events in each world are directly tied to and influence events in the other world.
In Dekker’s Narnia-type world God is known as “Elyon”, and one of the things Elyon loves to do is He loves to come out and play with His people (similar to how God walked in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve in the early chapters of Genesis). In the story, when Elyon calls His people to come out and play, all sorts of wonderful and amazing things happen. For instance, for the length of their playtime the people discover that they can fly like birds. Elyon also makes waterfalls flow upside down, He turns the grass purple, He makes the water taste like cherry cool-aid, and much more. So of course the people eagerly look forward to the times when Elyon calls them out to play.
Now, is the notion of God playing like that nothing more than a creative part of a silly fantasy story? I don’t think so. I think there’s some truth to it. I think God has a great sense of humor and I think He loves to play. It was God’s idea for a puppy to chase its tail. God was the one who created a baby’s smile and the cute little giggle that goes with it. Ice cream is a gift straight from heaven. God is playful and fun-loving and I also think He loves for us to play. The Bible refers to feasts and feasting, to dancing and celebrating more than 150 times.
In his book, “The Christian at Play” author Robert Johnston makes the case that “The person at play is expressing his or her God-given nature.” In other words, God created us with a playful nature like His own and He intends for us to express it as a means of enjoyment and leisure.
Sometimes we adult Christians get too serious for our own good. We equate holiness with seriousness and we become a bunch of dull old fuddy-duddies. We need to lighten-up. It would do most of good to spend an hour sitting in a mud puddle splashing and playing with a three year old.
God created you with the ability to enjoy life and to have fun. It’s okay to play.