God’s permanent goodness

Because of our awareness and understanding of Jesus’ example and victory, we know how everything will ultimately turn out.

During those hours that Jesus hung on the cross, how demoralized his followers must have felt. They were watching what they cherished most in the world seemingly being lost to them. Jesus appeared to be dying, his healing message and example to be disintegrating. They heard people say sarcastically, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he be Christ, the chosen of God” (Luke 23:35).

If you and I were able to go back in time and stand there below the cross that day, we wouldn’t like what we were seeing, yet we wouldn’t feel discouraged. Why? Because we’d already know how everything turns out! Even after watching a huge stone rolled in front of Jesus’ tomb—a stone that looked like it was sealing away all of what Jesus had given the world—we’d be excited for what we knew was coming next: Jesus’ victorious resurrection and ascension, a complete and utter triumph for Jesus—and, really, for everyone.

Today, you could say that, symbolically, that stone is still being rolled in front of one tomb or another. When it looks as if the goodness in the world is being hidden, or worse, disintegrating, we might unintentionally take on the tone of thought that Jesus’ disciples had during the crucifixion. It’s easy to feel angry about any suppression of goodness and purity. What can follow next is hopelessness. And then, like some of those disciples, we might finally slip into the abyss that is apathy or even despair.

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A brief prayer changed my life
April 11, 2022

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