Hope

Yesterday as she painted her story with somber colors, it was clear that whatever bright dreams for a future Camelot she might have clung to at one time had long ago melted away into dark oblivion. The hopelessly dark colors plastered on her life’s canvas had been the insidious work of powerful talons: serious chronic diseases, an abusive relationship with a felon, sleep deprivation, and a work history lying in shambles. Feelings of powerlessness and being a victim had stripped away all her hope. The limit of her horizon was set at acquiring a few safe hours of sleep, some food, a picture ID so she could get her medication and a bus pass.
For those accustomed to working with the down-trodden of the inner city, a cynical warning system will already be at high alert. But what if this were all true? What then? What hope does she have for a tomorrow?
Two millennia ago a heterogeneous amalgamation of curious onlookers, joyous victors, and women pierced with profound heartache surrounded a small detachment of Roman soldiers fixated on appending yet another body to a cross. Personally terrified earlier at this scene unfolding, Jesus was now allowing himself to be crucified to release a power and hope far greater than the evils dominating human lives. As he was lifted up so that his life might be ripped out, he knew his end would produce the colors of hope for a dark world.
A crayon box emanating the brightest colors ever seen would spill forth disciples transformed by Jesus’ death and filled with the Father’s love to minister to shattered lives. From his death, the power of a blinding white would emerge to bleach away even the stains from the most vile undeserving heart to set it free from the malicious talons of past guilt. A golden inheritance prepared for a king’s son would be offered to the most despised and deprived. The glorious colors of purpose, meaning, and godly decision-making would transform the here and now for even those imprisoned by chronic illnesses. A kingdom of disciples would come forth to carry the message of these bright colors into the darkest corners. Christ crucified provides hope, genuine hope for our world.
“… it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose” Philippians 2:12. How has the cross impacted your life that God might use you to brighten a part of our world?

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