Where Do We Find Hope When Darkness Overwhelms?

where do we find hope

I’ve never witnessed someone cross through the thin veil which separates this life from the next. When I listen to others describe it, I’m always filled with awe.

What was it like? Did angels lead the way into the Light which never fades? Was there hesitation or was it impossible to resist the pull of a place with no tears, shame or regret?

When tragedy hits, the questions abound. And there is an ache for a world where suffering and evil don’t knock us off our feet. A longing for a place we can’t see yet, but fills us with a hope that carries us when the load crushes.

This week, our community suffered a great loss. A family is grieving for little girl whose life on this earth was too short.

And as the questions play on repeat, I’m reminded how little I know.

I don’t know why some prayers for healing are answered and some aren’t.

I don’t know why one child suffers and another is saved by medicine or the supernatural.

I don’t know why girls are left motherless at an age when a mother’s touch is like air in the lungs.

I know little, and although I’m being transformed, perhaps that’s the way it’s supposed to be. Perhaps in some ways, knowledge does not equate with power.

We live in a world fallen far from the Eden where we once enjoyed complete, unblemished communion with God. And we have knowledge of more than God ever intended.

We know good from evil. And to be honest, sometimes that knowledge levels us, doesn’t it? Our heightened awareness of the darkness around us leaves us searching for something sure, unwavering and true.

clouds and trees

When trouble and hardship come, we often forget where our anchor lies. I know I do. And the other day, as I sat swaying and flipping through my Bible, my eyes landed on 1 Peter.

Peter is writing to a church who is discouraged. They are being persecuted and ridiculed for their faith, and they need encouragement.

As I read through the first chapter, one word jumped off the page: living.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you…

 1 Peter 1:3-4 NIV (emphasis mine)

It was a single word I’d passed over time and time again, but it struck me in a way that left my eyes wet and my hands trembling as I ran my finger over the black and white.

We hope because Jesus is more than black and white in a book. The blood that courses through our veins filled his.

We hope because he left his place in heaven and chose to become dusty and dirty with us, walking with the afflicted and the poor. And then he took the darkness which threatens to consume us on himself.

All of it.

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

 Matthew 27:26 NIV

We don’t ever have to ask the haunting question Jesus screamed on the cross. When we rail against the hurt and the unknown, we can rest assured that he when he said, “It is finished,” he meant it.

This hope is living because he is living. Living to intercede. Living to comfort in the moments when life overwhelms.

He breathes life in the gap between this life and the next. He breathes life in the unknown. He is there.

And when the questions don’t stop or the answers don’t come, his grace still fills the empty spaces.

 

Linking up with these communities: #LiveFreeThursday

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16 thoughts on “Where Do We Find Hope When Darkness Overwhelms?

  1. This is really so beautiful and filled with such truth. Jesus is more than black and white… how good it is to remember He is the living God who works and breathes grace into our lives… even in those emptiest of spaces. Thank you Abby!

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  2. “I know little, and although I’m being transformed, perhaps that’s the way it’s supposed to be.” Amen. Thank you for this beautiful post that drew tears in my eyes. Jesus, please rescue those who need you today. In your beautiful name we pray. Amen.

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  3. I’m so sorry about your friend losing her little girl. Some things in life literally leave us speechless. Without words. Thanks for this: “I know little, and although I’m being transformed, perhaps that’s the way it’s supposed to be.” Tragedy always reminds us of how little we know. Thanks for pointing your readers to the living hope we do have.

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  4. Abby, I’m so sorry for your friend’s huge loss. This side of heaven, we don’t always get all the answers. So true. But what a great Word God gives that even still we have a LIVING hope. Praying for you as you love your friend in the coming weeks and months and years. ♡

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  5. Beautiful, Abby. You’ve poured your heart out here so honestly and tackled so many of the questions that can drag us farther from faith…except you’ve drawn God near. He is a very living hope and I’m praying you, your community, and the dear parents of that precious little girl feel His very present nearness today. xoxo

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  6. What a beautiful post! I adore this statement: “He breathes life in the gap between this life and the next. He breathes life in the unknown. He is there.” My goodness, YES! Thank you for this beautiful reminder today. Praying for you and your community today. #livefreeThursday

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  7. Abby,
    I pray that God will wrap His loving, comforting arms around this family and the community. Some mysteries we just won’t know the answers to…at least not in this lifetime. Thankfully, though, as you pointed out, our hope is living because Christ lives. That is the Easter message that we need to carry with us each and every day! Absolutely beautiful post Abby!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

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  8. Abby, what a great word! I love this: We live in a world fallen far from the Eden where we once enjoyed complete, unblemished communion with God. And we have knowledge of more than God ever intended. We live in a world where our kids are considered the Information Generation. They, and us as well, are overwhelmed with information, good and bad. Sometimes we just don’t need to know things. Not that we should ignore important issues, but sometimes knowledge gets to be too much and it becomes harder to hear what God has to say on a matter. I remember going through a really difficult situation years ago, and I remember God speaking to me that I didn’t need to know everything. I didn’t need to know details or more information. Sometimes, it’s not so much the situation as too much information that brings us unrest. Thanks for sharing this at #LiveFreeThursday.

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  9. Abby, this is such a beautiful post. Your words are so elegant and always filled with truth. Thank you for always sharing your heart so beautifully. My prayers for Emma’s family in this difficult time.

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  10. Pingback: Where Do We Find Hope When Darkness Overwhelms? | Ladyjane63's Weblog

  11. Abby, I praise God for His word and how He inspires you. Your words are moving and beautiful. I am so glad you shared, thank you.

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