Right now, at this moment, the odds do not look good for the people in sub-Sahara Africa. Rains have gone missing for a few years, civil and local wars have sapped the strength, vitality, and hard currency reserves of tribes and nations, and a disease is destroying the heart of soul of the nation. Things are very ugly.
Right now, in this space and time, things are not good. Cancer is slowly taking away one’s ability to fight on. With it goes a little bit of hope each day. I looked away and saw broken relationships were once one found buckets of hope and love. My gaze continued and in situation after situation, individual after individual the same reflection and question emerged. The situation is bleak, hope is under attack, pain and anguish are rampant; the situation, in fact life itself appears to be very ugly.
Along comes a cheerful smile and words about hope, compassion, and understanding. I counter that I don’t see these things very often. I point out the facts, tell the stories, and paint the pictures. With each one I find any person of God struggling with the reality of what we can both see. No denials are offered, no excuses made, and no justification considered. The answers are simple and direct.
Have you seen Carli’s smile when she won a silver medal?
Did you look into the eyes of the children of Madras last week?
Have you heard the excitement when Whitney tells of achieving another A?
What was the reaction to the band playing thank-you songs on the beach Saturday night?
How about the Yankees?
What about you? Can you make a difference?
The battles, pain, and death around us are real and personal. “This” is life. “This” also includes God’s battle with Evil. This part of the story often gets buried yet I find myself holding onto it for life. God already won the battle at the Christian place called the “Cross”.
“Then I heard a strong voice out of Heaven saying, ‘Salvation and power are established!’” (Revelation 12.8)