From Shakespeare to Salvation

"And one man in his time plays many parts" - William Shakespeare's As You Like It, spoken by the melancholy Jaques in Act II Scene VII

This line is part of the All The World's A Stage monologue from within Shakespeare's play, As You Like It. I admit to being a Shakespeare fan.  During high school I read his works for fun, not just as a school assignment.  In fact I have his complete works on my shelf today.

This speech compares the world to a stage and life to a play, and lists the seven stages of a man's life: infant, schoolboy, lover, soldier, justice, old age and facing imminent death. It is also one of Shakespeare's most frequently quoted passages.

I have been an infant, schoolboy, lover and soldier...in the Salvation Army.  Truth be told, my kids tell me I am old as well! In all seriousness though, over my lifetime I have played many roles.  Son, father, husband, pastor, author, baker, student, teacher and friend just to name a few.  Yet it is being a child of God that I find my utmost satisfaction. 

The apostle Paul also talks about the stages of life in 1 Corinthians 13:11, "When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things."

Like Paul, when I was a child I spoke, thought and reasoned like a child.  As I have aged, my speech, thoughts and reasoning have matured as well.  Don't get me wrong, I am still a child at heart.  However, when it comes to my faith...I have matured.  I have run the gamut throughout my faith walk, ups and downs, highs and lows...and I have realized that the Gospel, for all it's richness and depth...is actually quite simple.  At the end of the day...it's all about Jesus and what He did on the cross.  By accepting His gift of salvation, i entered into the greatest role of my lifetime...child of the King!  

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