I bet it haunts you too. That image, you know the one? The one of the vulture waiting. It caused a revolution at our house this week…Injustice has a tendency to do that.
We found our kids huddled together on the couch flipping through the “100 most influential photos” magazine that Time recently published. Joel sat down with them and I heard him explaining things like napalm. Famine.Vietnam. Nuclear bombs. I wanted to stop him. But they are getting older. These are conversations we need to have.
That night my daughter could not sleep. She was writhing and crying and calling herself a coward, selfish. My E cannot shake it. She sees herself in that little girl. She knows how we are one.
Did you know the photographer that took that photo, later took his own life? Some accounts I read attributed the death to the guilt he felt, but that oversimplifies of course. I can’t help but wonder though, if we were made for more than to look and see? We were made to be hands and feet. We are active participants here, made to join Jesus in His ministry of reconciliation and justice.
I know we all feel uneasy right now, but it is not the first time the world has felt like this. I’m sure it has felt much worse. But this is when the helpers and healers, the poets and dreamers go to work. These are the conditions that breed the visionaries, the restorers, those who want to learn what it means to bind the broken-hearted. These are precisely the days we learn what we are made for, what we are to do. This is when we learn what good work is.
The difference for a Christian is that we do not give way to despair. We are the ones who subvert dread to hope. We are the ones who lead the pilgrimage in the darkness with our light glowing, the ones who never let the flame go out. We are the ones who cannot give way to complacency because this hope should move us to action.
Hope is our antidote to fear.
Hope prompts the movement from angst to action.
Hope will be our testimony and our gift.
Hope will be our dialect; our defining language.
Hope will be our reward and our calling.
Hope will be the trail we blaze and the direction we lead.
Hope will deepen as we trust Him more and Hope will be what transcends all our heartbreak and every insurmountable obstacle.
The only thing we can do with angst and fear is to set it ablaze with the HOPE OF CHRIST. We do the next tiny thing in front of us, that is all we ever have. We bring our tiny light to the dark. The small thing you can begin. It is such a relief just to start, such a release to move in the direction of hope. Fear cannot stand against such audacity. It crumbles.
And so. We hope.
(A few small ideas? The tiny things to move you in the direction of light? Below…Emilys first step. Or join us tomorrow? Our prayers never return void)
What is it you can do this week of hope, one small move, our single candle blazing that can move you in the direction of HOPE? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
I blog on hope a lot. Here are a few pieces from the archives: