Lessons On Hope


My cat is cold again this morning apparently because for the third or fourth day in a row she has placed herself directly in front of my computer screen--in between it and my keyboard.  

I've had to make adjustments to accommodate her on account of her stubborn insistence to sit where it's warmest, at least in her mind.  I also know that as soon as I get up, she will move to occupy my chair. 

I don't mind.  It's kind of calming to have her sitting in front of me.  I'm just going to embrace this purring-cat-on-my-keyboard induced moment of peace for a bit.  All of the bad news of the world can wait for a bit.  

I shouldn't have done it, but I peeked a look at my online news feed earlier. There were stories about recent mass shootings, more angry rhetoric over the recent government shutdown and the threat of another one reports on violence all over the world... 

I'm worn out from feeling outraged all of the time, or at least feeling like I ought to be.  I wish some of the Christians on my Facebook feed felt the same way.  Far too many of them can't seem to find enough things to be ticked off about.  

It feels like for some of these Christians there's always a new thing to boycott, another celebrity to ridicule, a different politician to demonize.  They never get tired of it.  And the funny thing is, they come from all sides of the spectrum--liberal, conservative, and everything in between.  

Listen, there's a lot of truth-telling that needs to be told so I'm not advocating that we all retreat to our respective corners and just sit there in silence.  The world is full of injustice that needs to be named and overcome.  

But I think we all need a break for a hot minute.  And maybe we need to recalibrate a bit.  Walter Brueggeman recently wrote:  
The world is waiting for Christians who are not angry or anxious or weary or quarrelsome or cynical or in despair.  The world is waiting for folk who trust enough to move out beyond themselves. 
As I sit here this minute, I realize that the emotion I long for more than any other right now is hope.  I need to feel hope.  I don't think that I can take another step today without latching on to hope and hanging on for dear life.  

Fortunately, the Christian faith to which I ascribe is grounded in hope.  Sometimes I forget this and need to be reminded.  Sometimes God uses something as simple as a cat seeking warmth in front of a computer screen to bring it all into focus.  

May you be filled today with the peace that comes from the audacious and defiant hope that is yours in Jesus Christ.  And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.  



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