Always Hope

There is mercy
In the moments
When the burden
Is an ocean
In a teardrop
There is healing
When the heartache
Weighs a mountain
In the grieving
Of a love lost

So many blogs this year have been reflective of the tough challenges we face around the world in a myriad of expressions and manifestations. War, protest, political upheaval, deep economic stress, cost of living. It can be discouraging and overwhelming – left to ourselves, at least that’s how I feel.

For over two thousand years breaking into similar human chaos and conflict a beam of light always shines at Christmas. It comes from way beyond range rovers on Mars looking for life. Pulsating from the One who claims to be the giver of life, God, the revelation was birthed in a scruffy stable in Bethlehem. We didn’t have to go exploring the vastness of space for life beyond. Eternity and infinity came to us, miraculous, unbelievable, unexpected, and profoundly personal. A baby, fathered by God, born of a peasant girl – virgin – mother. Jesus.

For over two thousand years the God/Father has been reaching out to invite us to turn from the petty squabbling that erupts in wars, greed, and power politics. Inviting us to find our true destiny and identity with Him. Where love is kind and brave, people serve and care, sacrifice is easily given for another, forgiveness and grace are plentiful, truth is pure, and life is abundant with enough for all.

We look around and scoff that such words are the stuff of dreams. It indeed seems that way. The reality is that we experience the chaos of a world where we have expressed our independence, freedom, and even defiance; we will not acknowledge or serve any god that is not of our own fabrication. All the wars and suffering, the exploitation and cruelty, come from our complicit hands one way or another. It has nothing to do with God. He gave us what we asked for. The freedom to choose.

The good news is that despite all of that, Christmas is a reminder that God’s love never gives up. We lose the plot so quickly in our quest for survival, desperately trying to protect our turf and clutch our threadbare definitions of meaning and fulfilment. Just as babies cannot have life without the union of a man and woman neither can they ever know the deepest fulfilment of living without reference to those outside themselves. When we realize we have made a wrong choice and we cannot put the toothpaste back in the tube God offers to redeem (multiply the one wrong choice by a few thousand). How cool is that! Repeatedly, patiently, kindly reaching out.

Sometimes even when we do seek for the One who is greater we find life to be a challenge, perhaps even disappointing. Many times I have found that music soaks in deeper than anything else. It captures a truth and conveys a thought that germinates mysteriously within me and my heart shouts or whispers “Yes” – depending on where it touches. Such is the song below by Hillsong…..

Only time will tell
All the faithfulness
Of Your hand Lord
All the joy we’ll find
In the grace You sow
In this valley of tears
Heavy as the sorrow is here

It’s for the ones who struggle: locked down in China, battling in Ukraine, grieving the death of a loved one, numbed with disappointment quietly alone in a crowd. God did not break into history to be triumphant and insensitive, pointing a finger or judging harshly. He came in the person of Jesus to share our journey, to hold our hand, and to encourage us to trust him. He came that we may be unconditionally understood, accepted, forgiven, and loved. May it be so today for you and me. Hope rooted and gifted in Him, Jesus – Christmas every day, actually.

Perhaps there’s only one who reads this note and needs encouragement. This is for you.

Delightful (The Sower Never Wastes A Tear)

Song by Hillsong UNITED

Lyrics

There is mercy
In the moments
When the burden
Is an ocean
In a teardrop
There is healing
When the heartache
Weighs a mountain
In the grieving
Of a love lost

Only time will tell
All the faithfulness
Of Your hand Lord
All the joy we’ll find
In the grace You sow
In this valley of tears
Heavy as the sorrow is here

I know there’ll come a day
When we sing
Upon these ashes
How Your beauty
Made this valley
So delightful
And we’ll laugh
Upon that mountain
How this Everest of grief
Became our dance floor

Only time will tell
All the faithfulness
Of Your hand Lord
All the joy we’ll find
In the wild delight
Only heaven could yield
Heavy as the sorrow is here
I know the Sower never wastes a tear

So I’ll wait
Long as heaven takes
One day I’ll see
The joy You make of this
‘Cause ain’t nothing gonna stop
Your faithfulness

So I’ll wait
Long as heaven takes
One day I’ll see
The joy You make of this
How You never let a single tear go wasted

So I’ll wait
Long as heaven takes
One day I’ll see
The joy You make of this
How You take my sorrow
And You turn it into delight

So I’ll wait
Long as heaven takes
One day I’ll see
The joy You make of this
Sooner or later
Either way I’ll see

I’m gonna see
How You turn this thing around
Turn my mourning into dancing
Turn this sorrow into joy
Come the morning light

Oh I’ll sing Your praise
I’ll sing Your praise
‘Cause ain’t nothing gonna stop
Your faithfulness

Come the morning light
All through the night
One day I’ll see
The joy you make of this
‘Cause I know
The Sower never wastes a tear

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Joel Timothy Houston

Delightful (The Sower Never Wastes A Tear) lyrics © Hillsong Music Publishing Australia

John Cox

Christian Author

Submit a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s