Can you believe that it is already Good Friday and that this Sunday is going to be Easter? It seems like just yesterday that I was putting away my Christmas decorations and now I am prepping for summer vacation. Every year that I grow older I am amazed at how fast time seems to fly. One day I was 10 years old and the next day I have a 10 year old of my own and I wonder, "where did the time go?
This week Susie and I have been hanging out with my parents and our kids over here in Orlando at Universal Studios. I am now sitting here this morning on our last day reflecting a bit on our time here and to be honest I am sad and excited at the same time. I am sad because today we must pack up and head home. No more thrill rides that make me scream at the top of my lungs, no more all you can eat buffets where I don't care how much I eat cause I'm on vacation, no more staying up as late as possible just to catch a glimpse of the fireworks in the distance, no more completely uninterrupted time with the people that I love the most, my family. Not that all of those things cannot happen at home; but a lot of times they don't. Why? because time won't allow it.
This week I found myself excited while listening to my dad tell my son some of the same stories that I heard as a kid. He told them with the same excitement and passion that he shared them with me over 30 years ago when I was Anthony’s age. I watched my dad and mom ride the amusement park rides with my kids like they did with me when I was a kid still laughing like they were 30 years old again. But they are not and all I could do was keep hoping that this time would never end. It was that good. And as my parents drove away last night and I watched my son look out the window of his room and say, “we sure had a great time with Nana and Papa didn’t we dad” I was a bit overwhelmed. I kept saying to myself I HOPE we can do this again real soon, I HOPE that my mom and dad stay healthy. I HOPE, I HOPE, I HOPE.
All this hoping led me to the passage that I read last night in John 17 and all of the other accounts of the prayer of Jesus in the Garden just before he went to the cross. I kept reading over and over again all that Jesus was praying and this theme kept coming up. HOPE. Jesus was the giver of HOPE yet during this time He was asking for HOPE from His father. HOPE that this was the right choice, HOPE that His followers would be ok, HOPE that his followers would share His message with the world. Then I thought about Jesus human side and wondered if during His prayer to His father was He hoping for more time with those He loved so much like I was last night. Was He hoping for more laughs together, more meals together, more, memories? Probably. But he knew for them to have any eternal Hope that He would have to become their HOPE.
And so here I am at the close of another Holy week, so what do I do? I HOPE. HOPE for more time, more vacation, more food, and more fun. The problem is, all my hopes seem like dreams to me and I am tired of dreaming aren’t you. I want my HOPE to be a reality and I know that the only way for that to happen is for me to first find my HOPE in Jesus and then become His Agent of HOPE. I believe that Jesus wants His message of HOPE to become an epidemic that sweeps across our lives and transforms our world. I believe He wants it to become an epidemic -a HOPE EPIDEMIC. And this Sunday at Relevant Church we are going to launch that epidemic.
I want to encourage you to be here this week and to bring someone with you. We are about to launch into something BIG.
See you all Sunday,