Finding Hope After A Bad Year

Will 2013 be a good year?

Last year wasn’t so hot, was it? According to USA Today, the average American will remember 2012 for Sandy Hook Elementary School, Superstorm Sandy, and Jerry Sandusky, just three of their top 10 news stories of 2012.

Finding hope amidst bad newsMost of the top 10 (or all, depending on your perspective) were bad news, and 2012 left us shaking our collective heads. And who didn’t gasp aloud when they first heard about Sandy Hook? Indeed, whether individually, collectively, or vicariously, 2012 brought each of us some measure of sadness or suffering.

For us, 2012 brought the death of Lon’s father (just 9 months after the death of Dawn’s father), and renewed battles for Dawn’s emotional health. Despite these heartaches, the conviction we hold and propose to you is that God is good, even when life isn’t.

Reader, if you feel particularly stuck and hopeless about the new year, would you please consider the hope that Christians, like Average Us, have depended on for centuries? Here it is, summarized in modern language by question #1 of the New City Catechism:

Q: What is our only hope in life and death?

A: That we are not our own but belong, body and soul, both in life and death, to God and to our Savior Jesus Christ.

Allow me to break down the Bible teachings this Q&A summarizes:

  • The world is a hopelessly broken place full of evil, disease and disaster.
  • Life without God in this world is a hopeless business that ends in death.
  • Belonging to God is our only hope in life and death, and even beyond death.

Belonging “…to God and to our Savior Jesus Christ” — These are hope-filled words. What a soul-comfort to know that one’s life and death is in the hands of the all-wise, all-powerful, ever-present God who is lovingly committed to the eternal good of those who belong to Him!

No, I can’t prove this to you.

But I ask you to consider nonetheless — for the first time perhaps — whether this is a real hope you could trust. For, if there is a God, if Jesus is His divine Son sent to rescue us from the broken world, then belonging to Him is a hope that will not fail you. If He really accomplished His mission, if He really is resurrected, then the Christian hope of belonging to Him is an ever-green, ever-relevant hope on which you can hang your weary, superstorm-tossed soul.

Whatever your current thoughts about God, Jesus, the Bible, or the Church, please consider this spring of hope in life and death, and discover with Average Us that God is great…

even if 2013 isn’t.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. — Jesus


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8 thoughts on “Finding Hope After A Bad Year

  1. Thanks for your encouraging words after the death of our 19-year-old daughter, Emilee, on Nov. 1, 2012.

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