No String is Too Tangled for Hope

Have you ever started something and eventually wanted to quit?

It’s not that I want to stop reading the Bible.

It’s just that I’ve reached a tough place in blogging through its pages.

So much of the Old Testament is depressing.

I don’t like the way women are treated.

I don’t like the constant mention of war.

I don’t like the way family members turn on each other.

To be honest, if it weren’t for an occasional Psalm mixed in with the story line,

I would lose this Book most days and turn to something more uplifting…..

like the morning news.

And that’s when it hits me.

Things aren’t any different today.

Human trafficking

Countries unable to get along

Families falling apart to the right and the left

There’s just one difference.

We don’t have the option of closing this book –

the one in which we’re the main characters.

So I can’t close the Bible either.

There has to be a reason God allowed so much bad news to be saved on scrolls…..

and then chose for it to be passed from one generation to the next.

There has to be a reason He isn’t afraid (or embarrassed) when we open it every morning

and read of another scandal,

another mess.

He knows what we need to know…….

every single day.

He was there.

He was working for good when every single thing seemed bad.

He was weaving a way to Jesus

even when the men and women who held the thread

created knots.

And He’s here today.

Even when the morning news seems hopeless,

He’s still weaving a way to Him.

The thread of Hope that began stitching lives together thousands of years ago

is the same thread stitching us together today.

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth,

visible and invisible,

whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; 

all things have been created through him and for him.

He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

Colossians 1:15-17

When I reach places where the Old Testament is hard,

I have to stop and remind myself of something that changes every word I read:

The New Testament is coming.

Yes.

With every painful chapter

I have to remember,

God is moving through history,

making a way for His Son.

His timing is perfect,

and Jesus won’t arrive until this world is ready for Him.

So this morning as I read of Amnon’s defiling of his sister Tamar,

and Absalom’s carefully-crafted revenge followed by an attempt to dethrone his own dad,

I have to remember the same thing that makes the morning news somewhat bearable.

The New Testament is coming.

And Jesus is too.

God is working in spite of evil.

He isn’t wringing His hands,

wondering where He went wrong.

He knew free will would have its not-so-good consequences,

but He also knew any kind of forced will would eliminate the chance to choose Him.

And love is always a choice.

So this morning I pause as I read Psalm 3:3,

But you, O Lord, are a shield about me,
    my glory, and the lifter of my head. 

God wants to be our shield.

Our glory.

The Lifter of our head.

I’ve sat with women in jail

and children in therapy

and longed to do the exact same thing –

Lift their heads

Help them see what I see

Feel what I feel

Know what I know-

No matter how tough life gets,

or how messy it seems,

there is always room for Hope.

There is always a reason to look up.

The One who weaved His way through the Old Testament until Jesus appeared on the scene

is weaving His way through our painful stories, too.

And He won’t stop until Jesus appears.

So this morning if your head is hanging a little low,

or life seems tough

and answers aren’t coming easily

or mistakes seem unable to be erased,

please remember this:

God is right there.

He holds the thread of Hope and never stops weaving it

in and through and around your tangled mess.

And this morning,

even if you’re fighting the thought of a thread of Hope,

it can’t be removed from the tapestry of your life.

Hope is here.

And it’s here to stay.

Holding us all together.

Until Jesus appears again.

_________________________________

His timing is perfect,

and Jesus won’t return until this world is ready for Him.

__________________________________

So I won’t stop blogging through the Old Testament,

because this morning I’ve been reminded 

no string is too tangled for Hope….

and no string is too tangled for Him.

 

(Today’s reading was from Psalm 32; 86; 102-103; 122; II Sam. 13 – 15; Psalm 3-4; 13; 28; and 55.)

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