Strachan: Hope

“Generations of children have grown up with Winnie-the-Pooh and his circle of friends. One of the indelible characters from these books is Eeyore. No matter how well things are going, the little gray donkey finds a way to inject gloom into the conversation. Eeyore spots the shadow in every sunbeam. His friends love him, and he loves them, but he has a hard time with life. He’s not exactly a barrel of laughs to be around.

It is not hard to be an Eeyore. If we want to wallow in discouragement, we can find ample opportunity. It will gladly show up on our doorstep. It will crowd its way into our daily newsfeed. It will flood our social media accounts like a host virus and take them over. Discouragement spreads contagiously, and one cannot easily run it off. Before we know it, it has taken over our thoughts, and we’re on our way to becoming bitter, wounded people.

We all need godly hope. The opposite of an Eeyore is not an Icarus, soaring up to the sun. We needn’t pretend that evil doesn’t exist. But we must remember, above all, the nature of the God we worship. He creates from “chaos,” from “utter confusion” as Jonathan Edwards argues. He brings order where there is none, and causes “light to shine” in the shadows. He does this not merely in a make-your-day-a-little-brighter way. He is busy saving a people for himself. He is building his church through Christ. It is often when his people are at their lowest, as in the days before the Protestant Reformation, that he will strike suddenly, saving souls and growing his people in grace.”

Lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. (Hebrews 12:12-13)

-Owen Strachan, Always in God’s Hands: Day by Day in the Company of Jonathan Edwards, 287.

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