A Glimmer of Light

Yesterday I chose the texts for our Good Friday service. As I read through the Old Testament texts prefiguring the crucifixion and the New Testament account, I was struck by one recurrent theme. In each text I found a quiet ray of hope.

Some of these texts could be thought of as the darkest places of scripture, yet it seemed the darker the passage the clearer the ray of light.

For example: in Psalm 22 David recounts feeling utterly abandoned and surrounded. The text begins with the very words Jesus would cry out in his darkest hour: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Yet this Psalm of lament ends with “The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied; those who seek him shall praise the LORD! May your hearts live forever! (Psalm 22:26 ESV)”

This theme runs throughout the Bible. If you look for it, I believe you will see it in your life as well.

Once when I was in the depths of self-pity and loneliness, I cried out to God for just a little help. As I was praying, I stepped over a dead bird in the street. My heart immediately remembered: Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. (Matthew 10:29 ESV)

A friend of mine went through a terrible divorce several years ago. Lonely, betrayed, broke and deeply depressed he cried out to God. As he was praying, his son walked into the room. He thought “I would go through hell for that boy.” Then he remembered, without this wretched marriage, that boy would not exist. God is even in this.

As we approach Good Friday and Easter, I want to remind you that God specializes in bringing light out of darkness. As a matter of fact, “Let there be light” are his first recorded words (Genesis 1:3). If you are in despair, do not be afraid to ask him for that ray of light. We will watch for that light together.

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