When Hope Seems Lost

 I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. Job 19:25 (NIV)

Have you noticed the increasing number of baby animal web cams? Who can resist watching little ones, furred and feathered? The television news, last night, featured the latest animal babies, the Decorah Bald Eagle Cam streaming live video of several chicks just hatched.

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you might remember Molly and McGee, the avian stars of “The Owl Box” web cam in San Marcos, California. The cam had millions of hits spanning several seasons of owl watching. Viewers from around the world saw three clutches of owlets born to Molly and her mate. Then, several weeks ago, the bad news came that McGee had flown off to find food for Molly and their fourth clutch, and he never returned. Sometimes, the playfulness and joy we find in life is interrupted by sadness. Life is like that sometimes. We go about our daily business, and then tragedy strikes.

You might also remember my post about Lily and Hope, two research bears living in the wild near Ely, Minnesota. Hope was Lily’s only cub, and the pair became a hit on live-stream video channels. One day, little Hope got separated from her mother. Somehow, she managed to stay alive for two weeks alone in the forest before she and Lily found each other again. That winter, Lily gave birth to another cub. The researchers named it Faith. Lily and her daughters lived happily and uneventfully until last fall when a hunter’s shot killed Hope. Faith literally helped Lily mourn and move on.

Faith is like that. It gives us hope when hope seems lost. The best example of this happened more than two thousand years ago. Hope seemed lost on that dark day when Jesus died on the cross. The Rabbi, Teacher, Healer, the One who claimed to be the Messiah, was gone. For some who had believed in Him, all hope was lost. For others who still believed, faith kept hope alive.

This week, we remember and honor the sadness, hope, and faith that came in the days leading to Resurrection Sunday. We remember the Last Supper, the walk to Golgotha, The Death on the cross, and the waiting for the Third Day. While we wait, we hang onto this: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1 KJV) This week, Earth and Heaven wait to celebrate next Sunday, that wonderful day when Jesus confirms that where there is faith, there is hope.

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