Sunday, March 15, 2009

hope for a tree cut down

Hope is a word that is coming back around for me. Now that I don't have to hear it co-opted by politicians on a daily basis, I am re-examining what it means in my life. Our church recently had a conference centered around the theme of Christian hope, I am reading a great book about hope, and I've been listening to some awesome music with a message of hope. [The title of this post is from the album I'm referring to - click the link to download it for free.]

Last week I posted about optimism, reflecting on God's work in my life as He has used painful circumstances to change my optimism into hope. The circumstances that led me to write that post center around what God is doing in our church right now. Between October 2008 and April 2009 we will have lost our Senior Pastor (and his wife, our Preschool Director), our Associate Pastor (and his wife, our Children's Director), and our Director of Worship, Music & the Arts. All have left on good terms with the church and for good reasons, but the fact remains that the majority of the church staff we had six months ago is gone.

As a church, it is hard to be optimistic in this situation. But Christ did not come to earth, die on a cross, and rise again so that we can have optimism. He came that we might have life, life to the full, and in that life is great hope. I don't know what He has in store for our church. People I love have left, or are leaving, and I've lost my expectations for what our future looks like. But I have not and will not lose hope.

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