Finding hope in dark times
Finding hope in Dark Times
When Jesus rode into Jerusalem on his donkey, the crowd roared with praise and excitement! They had pinned their hopes on Jesus to free them from the oppressive Roman Rulers, and by the looks of it, Jesus certainly had the power to do so. If calming storms, healing diseases and raising people to life were possible for Jesus, then he could certainly get rid of those nasty soldiers making life miserable for the Jews.
I can hear the cries of those suffering, “Yes, Jesus is going to answer our prayers, he’s gunna smash the bad guys! Yippee-kai-ya!” Maybe also a few expletives, but I best not write them down.
However, things turned south very quickly for them. Within a few days they saw that Jesus didn’t fight those Roman Rascals! In fact he put up with the lies, abuse, torture and found himself bloody, beardless and naked, hanging on a cross. Seemingly helpless and powerless. The people were so disappointed and angry. Their cheers of exhilaration had quickly turned into spit and hatred because he didn’t answer their prayers of liberation.
So he died tragically with only a few supporters believing in him. So so sad.
But three days later, he came back to life! Jesus defeated death, which showed he has the keys to heaven and eternal life. So Jesus did answer their prayers, but just not in the way they expected. He didn’t free them from the physical oppressors, but from the oppression of sin, shame, and eternal death. So for those that believe in him and treat him as king, they now have a chance to become his child.
And the offended Jews now had a choice to make. Would they continue to hate, or would they change their mind by realising they had got it wrong, ask for forgiveness and live with a changed heart and attitude?
The same choice faces us today.
Will we be offended because God didn’t answer our prayers the way we wanted and continue to reject him. Or will we say to God, “God I don’t understand, please help me to understand, help me to see you in this situation”.
Because that’s the heart that God is seeking, and that is available not for a select few, but anyone who is humble enough to admit they need him.