Musical producer Jonathan Larson is struggling to get his new show off the ground, but that doesn’t stop him from celebrating life with his friends in his small apartment. In a joyous moment he sings and dances with them, ‘This is the life… bo-bo bo-bo bo…’ It’s far from ideal… ‘Toilet’s in the closet… you’d better hope there’s a light bulb in there!’ But still he sings on. It’s a great scene of camaraderie and hope amongst life’s realities.
If we expected God to be grim, severe, straight-faced and tight-fisted then we are to be surprised. Jesus was forever getting into trouble for going to the wrong parties. And he most likely danced at those too. When he invited a rebel tax collector to be his friend, Matthew immediately threw a party! The kind of party full of struggling folk, and those unacceptable in decent society. The situation seemed so inappropriate that the word scum was bandied around by Jesus’s critics. But ‘this was the Life…’ Jesus was himself the Life… and he was not going to keep that life bottled up in the nice clean places. Rather he was offering it to all and sundry, no matter what their world-views, experiences or personalities. When Jesus describes the kingdom of God he uses the words… party and feasting! And he is busy sending out invitations to us all, with his life, his stories, and in his offer of friendship. ‘This is the Life… bo-bo bo-bo bo!’