We just love what a fantastic job so many people have been doing, in these two years of not having a Lead pastor. Craig spoke again yesterday, and similar to his last time, the subject had to do with business. The title was "Launching an Enterprise of Hope", and refers also to the fact that our church is starting a new series–about Hope, as well as about Abraham. And as Craig says, Abraham was a "down and dirty businessman"–he was very wealthy. And God entered his world, to prise him away from evil (the religions around him believed in sacrificing babies, etc.) by placing a call on his heart to move out of there; just as He has entered our world through Jesus, to prise us away from a life of sin. This is an Enterprise of Hope for which there can be no competitor: determine that though the WORST happens, yet you will hope. As it says in Romans 4:18, Abraham had faith "against all hope"!
My, but The Shawshank Redemption was such an excellent example of Hope. It was one of these movies about prisoners, and the "worst" in this case was an innocent man being charged for the murder of his wife. He made friends with another prisoner, who was losing hope over the years; the main character suffered unspeakably, but never did lose hope.. and eventually persuaded his friend to hope again. There’s a LOT more detail to the movie, so we haven’t really given anything away here–you should see it if you ever get the chance. (Oh, it’s also a novel, by Stephen King of course!)
So, never lose hope…
- though you are unjustly accused, and no one will listen;
- though bad habits have been established over many years;
- though physical problems seem insurmountable (like a Downs Syndrome baby, for example!);
There is more to life than this life!
There is more world out there, beyond the confines of this small stable…
Walk to Rivendell: We later find out that the flashes we saw in the night was Gandalf… (HOPE!!)