Raging Bull

Posted: May 28, 2009 in Uncategorized

When each of us comes face to face with a reality we have a couple of choices: One go with it or two, go against it. I recommend the first option. After a few decades of life on this planet I have come to accept gravity as a reality. Perhaps it was a few of those bicycle stunts that proved unsuccessful. Maybe it was all those failed attempts to dunk a basketball. It could have been the high dives that always ended in the water. In any event, I have come to believe in the reality of gravity. I am such a staunch believer in gravity that I have personally committed to never jump off tall buildings. Call me narrow minded, bigoted or unbending but I have come to personally believe that on this planet, gravity is a reality. I am OK with that. I have chosen to accept this reality. Sure I’ve had dreams of flying. I’ve wondered what it would feel like to have the supernatural ability to soar through the air, but those day dreams have never motivated me to go against the reality of gravity. Some people might choose to question what is real, throw off the restraints of laws or legalism, and decide to jump off a tall building with their hopes set on flying. Unless they have accepted the reality of gravity and made provisions that will assist them using other accepted laws of physics, for instance a glider, parachute, bungee cord or airbag- those unbelieving individuals will find gravity to be extremely real. When something is real there is no escaping it. If Jesus is truly God’s Son, if Jesus actually prayed for the transformation of this earth, then it seems to me it will be a reality. If it is real we have to choose to either go with it or go against it. Just like the law of gravity, I recommend going with Him into this new reality. Going against Him might prove to be fatal.
I recently saw a vivid visualization of this truth. Robert De Niro plays Jake La Motto in Martin Scorsese’s Oscar winning film, “Ragging Bull.” De Niro’s character, Jake La Motto is a man of violence and rage. These traits serve him well as a professional boxer and give him great success in the ring but in the arena of life these same traits destroy everything and everyone around him. Certainly the most powerful scene in the film finds Jake alone in a dark prison cell. There is no one to pound out his fury upon save himself. In desperation Jake turns towards the brick wall of the cell and over and over again he smashes his fists into the blocks. His rage is unleashed on the unyielding wall with each pounding serving only to destroy himself. The camera fades to black. Scorsese’s masterpiece using the paints of cinematography reveals a defeated man trapped in the repercussions of his life of violence. As I think of De Niro pounding away at that wall, I am reminded of the immoveable reality of Jesus. We could chose to pound away at Him. We could chose to live our lives contrary to His will. We could look to perpetually escape the difficulties of this broken down world, but what would we gain? We would be choosing a path that runs contrary to the road that Jesus is on. We could run against Him but I think it will prove more self destructive than a brick wall. We have a choice. Rather shouldn’t we choose to go with Him and move into this new world He is creating. Jesus is making this world new. Jesus is transforming this world into a heavenly reality. Shouldn’t we join Him?

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