The times we live in are getting dark. I don’t think anyone would argue with that. Two public shootings in two months. The theater shooting in Colorado and the Sikh temple shooting in Wisconsin. Both came out of grudges and misdirected hatred.
I’m going to say something crazy now. Hatred isn’t always a bad thing but it is incredibly volatile. Hating sin and hating what is wrong in the world is okay. What you do with it is the key. It can spur you on to change and make the world better or it can taint your view and instead of making it better you make it worse. This is why we need to be grounded in God. One of the strangest concepts in my Christian faith is loving the sinner while hating the sin. Another way of putting it would be that God loves us the way we are but He loves us too much to leave us that way. I’ll explain more about that in another post because I don’t want to lose focus in this one. My point is this: The world is getting darker.
My generation is generation X. Generation crossed right out. The generation with no hope. That is the message we keep getting on every side, everyday. This brings me to despair. I can see clearly why the mortality rate among young people is so high. But do you know what else I can see clearly? The stars.
I can’t see my hand in front of my face in this consuming darkness but I can see the stars shining radiantly above me. The ground below me is hard, rocky, and uncertain but the sky above is beautiful beyond compare.
I can hear God saying: “Be still and know that I am God. I shine even in the deepest, darkest gloom. If I have to shut off every light in your life for you to see what you are missing, I will. Be still, see My majesty, and morning will dawn. Not only will I keep you safe until morning but it will dawn more magnificent that you have ever seen it. Your perspective will never be the same again. When the lights go out, you will see Me. When the sun rises, you will see Me. When the shadows approach, I will shine through you so those around you will see Me. Pay attention! I am doing something amazing and I want you to be a part of it. I could do it without you, but I want you to partner with Me. I love you.”
There is hope if you know where to look for it. If you keep looking down or ahead or behind, you won’t see it but look up. It’ll admit, sometimes only time I look up is when I’ve been knocked flat on my back. But when I look up and see the beauty and goodness in the darkness I wonder why I was so afraid to look up. Maybe I was afraid to look up and find no stars. Even the idea of hope is so precious I’m afraid of losing it. I will be honest again. I have never looked up to a dark sky and been disappointed. God promised me and every one of us who believes that if we press on through our fear we will never be disappointed with a hopeless future.