I live vicariously through a snow-globe that was given to me by my son on my birthday this year. Inside the globe is not a tiny plastic replica of the leaning Tower of Pisa or palm trees on a tropical island, but a crudely drawn body with a photograph of my head glued to it.
As I sit at the kitchen counter wondering why I am sipping hot coffee, I shake myself up and watch the little white flakes float in the make-believe wind. It’s amazing how lively each little round speck dances around my head with very little effort on my part. It doesn’t take long for each one to settle at my stick figure feet until the next jolt awakens them. Waiting for my coffee to cool, I oblige and shake.
This particular snow globe, which I assume is typical of all snow globes around the globe, doesn’t do much unless it is prodded. Occasionally it has been employed to keep various papers from blowing away in the breeze.
But most of the time it does nothing more than take up a small but valuable piece of real estate on our kitchen counter. So every now and then someone must shake it up to ensure it doesn’t become something it wasn’t meant to become.
This is a great reminder of why we are fasting during Lent. We want to become what God originally intended us to be – beloved children living in righteous harmony with our Creator.
You see human beings are more like snow-globes and less like paperweights. We too need to be shaken up to keep us from stagnating. Sometimes it’s a new baby that shakes up a quiet house, an old friend who shakes up needed memories, or a stranger in your midst who challenges our comfort level and faith.
Being shaken up is part of Christian culture too. Moses shook up Israel. Jesus shook up the world. Luther shook up the church. In their stories we learn faith must remain active in order to address the ever-changing world.
When you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, your life becomes dramatically different. You are no longer your old self, but made anew. The Apostle Paul says “put away your old self,…and be renewed in the spirit of your minds,… clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph. 4:22-24).
The church too must always move in new and different directions in order to be relevant and reach people where they are. God has charged us with the responsibility to wake up the hearts and minds of all people so their faith can come alive in new and exciting ways. And so, like the evening wind that cools down a hot day, we welcome a shake up or two so we can swirl in the wind and be what we are meant to be.
Prayer: Gracious God, be kind to me today as you shake my spiritual journey so my faith can float in new and exciting ways as I follow Christ to the cross and through the grave. Amen.