Dearest Hope Family,
We are firmly within that strange middle passage of seasons.
The wonder of Christmas seems like ages ago, and the promise of Easter has not crested the horizon quite yet. The dull thud of the pandemic continues to echo in all our relationships and work. The dead weight of division aims to turn friends into enemies.
Our days are bathed in hand sanitizer. Our faces are hidden behind masks. Our interactions are distanced and stilted. And, as I have heard from so many of you, you are just plain old worn out.
In the midst of it all, I humbly offer you a prayer that aims to keep Winter from entering our heart, from taking up residence, from crowding out all that is true, good, beautiful because of the finished work of Jesus:
In the midst of Winter, when the days are cold and wind can pierce,
remind us of the warmth of your love.
In the midst of Winter, when days are short, dawn comes late, and dusk arrives early,
remind us that in the darkness your light still shines.
In the midst of Winter, when the flowers of spring still lie hidden in the earth, when leaves are off the trees, and the world can seem bleak,
remind us that Easter is but a short time away.
And when in our lives we feel as if we are experiencing a season of winter, reach out to us with the power of your resurrection so that we may feel the warmth of your love and see your light that alone can take away the darkness of our soul.”
I am so glad that we can gather this Sunday and celebrate that the Risen Lord Jesus has ascended to the right hand of Father and ever lives to plead the merits of his blood for his people!
Grace and peace,