Friday, February 13, 2015

More than 50 Shades of Grace

I have to be honest I have never read the book or even know the author's name.  But I do know that I have seen countless posts on social media ranting about the movie, 50 Shades of Gray.  I assume  what I have read in the reviews are true, and I can positively say, I won't see this movie.  Not because I feel that I am any more righteous for publicly stating that I have decided to protest it, but because my heart breaks for our society as we push past boundaries dancing into these shades of gray.  Our fancy footwork swirls our souls  through the black paint of a master artist's pallet as his artwork deceives us in thinking our culpability is merely a shade of gray.  There is a poetic  nostalgia that accompanies the term gray, when applied to our indiscretions.  Calling them gray gives us the opportunity to rationalize and justify.  However, this monochromatic art work of Satan deliberately fools us as we contrast our own  grays to those that are darker.  Gray is the favorite color of deception and is a more pleasant to utilize in conversation than the word sin. The costly price of these shades of gray  is death, but God offers, through Jesus, a vibrant future colored by redemption, sanctification, and life eternal. (Romans 6:22-23)

It is easy and right to look at this sinful phenomenon of the gray scale as a believer and publicly denounce it.  We must be careful though, focusing on the evident sin of others may make us feel better about ourselves for a short while.  But, I am wondering, as we judge the people who have or will support this movie, if we are ignoring the gray hue called condemnation in our own hearts.  If we are unlike an angry crowd lawfully ready to throw stones at the woman caught in her own shades of gray. (John 8)  My mind wrestles with what Jesus might have been thinking as he drew in the sand, and then to thoughts of the guilty woman as she was offered grace.  I am in awe of transformation done in the life of that abused woman because of grace.  I don't agree with this movie.  In fact, my frustration with its content makes me want to toss tables as Jesus did while his temple was being defiled by many shades of gray.  But I am not yet complete or perfect like Jesus and can't ignore the shades of gray in my own heart, while clinching to a stone of  judgment.  I pray that those lost in shades of gray be overwhelmed by shades of grace as we drop our stones in the dust, instead of throwing them.  When the dust settles, will we be like that angry crowd who hold on to pride and simply walk away? Or, will we stay to proclaim the Glory of God through our testimonies of His limitless shades of grace?  It is through the work Jesus has done in our own failures that demands that we overflow with the abundant grace.  The gray scale can be reversed as we  dance on injustices with compassion.  We are transformed with every step toward Christ because He has removed our shades of gray as far from us as the east is from the west.  We can stand confidently pure because He didn't come to condemn us but to offered unmerited favor.  For this reason do protest this book and movie, but in humility and with mercy, so that the world may turn from their shades of gray, and be transformed by Jesus' shades of grace. 

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