Bright Life Through Glasses Dimly: Hope in Crisis
I see life through these. Those are my glasses, as seen yesterday in a photo I took to test my camera. I'm near-sighted, and read more than many people. This combination requires specs. My eyesight is not bad, but, without them, Earthly life is fuzzier.
(I'll avoid continuing the wordplay above, as found in my post's subject line.)
It occurred to me how too many look at life without hope. Scroll down a couple of posts to see my Charlie Parker video. That's me talking about true hope: not in riches (though I realize I am enormously blessed), or good circumstances (job, life, marriage), but in God.
Granted, if you do not believe in God, hope is a more existential thing, and, if the economy is shot and you are dead broke, sure, I'd be depressed and hopeless too.
But I do believe in God. He's my lens. He doesn't show me everything, which frustrates me daily, and I don't see everything He shows me. I suppose that frustrates Him. Just the same, what I see is good. I see a few things: He put me here. 'Here' is His creation, and under His control. The world will go downhill, and, at some point, He's coming back to take me home. Maybe I'll die first. Either way, I'm going there when I'm done here.
I also see, in the meanwhile, I can do a few things on His behalf. He's asked me too. Feed the poor, help widows and orphans. It goes on, but this is not a Sunday school lesson on doing the right thing. It is about hope.
I'm loaded with hope. I've been knocked down many times in life. Some of it has been a direct result of my own actions, and sometimes, someone wronged me. Other times, it involves a thorn in my flesh. That thorn causes me to limp, so to speak, and I have not always limped well. All that is to say, I know something about hard times. There are people with even harder lives -- much harder -- but my point is the same. Just because things go awry does not mean God does not love us.
Hope is an odd concept. Barack Obama politicized it in his 2008 presidential campaign. At best, he offers existential hope, that life on Earth will be easier with him as president than with John McCain. No one can really say, as we cannot compare what a McCain presidency really would have looked like after fours years. Obama is our president, and I believe he wants to bring hope. A lot of people have bought into this, and, maybe he will improve the economy and all.
The true audacity of hope does not involves the goodness of Man, but the holiness of God. Obama does not -- cannot -- offer true hope. His solutions involves opening the doors to easier, cheaper, government funded abortions, as well as economic solutions. His kingdom, just as George W. Bush's kingdom, will be built on sinking sand. Bush gave us war, and Obama is giving abortion. Hope?
Real hope transcends death. Real hope moves us to love, and gives us eternal life. Both Bush and Obama claim to love Jesus Christ, but, as we know, all men have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. I doubt either man would deny that they have sinned. So have I.
But God reigns. His promises are solid, like rock. More so. His promise is transcendent of my sin. He's taken care of it.
My glasses are built of glass, a result of superheating sand. I see life inadequately, though the sand sinking beneath me, and in front of me. My soul sees a better place. No glasses can show me this. No crisis can destroy this.
On widows, incidentally -- as a man actively divorces his wife, she is, as far as I can tell, a widow. Christians are divorcing their spouses at a disgusting rate. Some are being actively dumped. One guy's passively divorcing his wife and kids by moving away. Another is passively divorcing his wife by not fighting her initiated divorce. A couple more are flopping back and forth, not really married, but not divorced. All are using excuses. In the cases mentioned above, all are Christians. Only one man of the five situations is actually standing against the divorce. The other four are acquiescing and doing what God hates. (As I write this, I'm cognizant this will be read here, and on Facebook through a feed by several friends dealing with this.)