We just wanted to relax. You know what I mean?
No high-speed shoot-’em-ups that would spike our blood pressure. Sure, those proved fun most other times, served with a side of popcorn and adrenaline.
But not that night. It had been an achingly long week, and we craved a laid-back movie. Not Mission: Jurassic Avengers, Part 9. No tear-jerkers–no, thank you. Another time, Buster.
And we knew just the movie. The previews promised a low-key, enjoyable story. We settled into the cushy theater seats, and I exhaled.
It started out nice enough. But then the characters grew more intense, more serious.
And then the cliff-hanger of a climax exploded, when all seemed lost for a little boy, no less! Tears threatened to spill down my cheeks. My throat squeezed tight. What happened to our nice Friday night? The storyline seemed hopeless and depressing.
…But then, wait for it…
Hope happened. A sliver here, a ray there. Soon, the nightmare of a storyline faded and the little boy was okay.
I exhaled again.
If only life resolved itself in a jiffy, like the movies. But life is hard, life can feel dark.
Paul, too, reminds us in Ephesians–more than once–of the truth: that life is dark. And hopeless.
And you were dead in your trespasses and sins…and we were by nature children under wrath as the others were also. Eph. 2:1a, 3b HCSB.
But wait for it…
But God who is rich in mercy, because of His great love that He had for us, made us alive with the Messiah even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace!
And this is real, not some flickering images on a big screen. This is truth and hope for our dark world! And there’s more:
…You were without the Messiah, excluded from the citizenship of Israel, and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. Eph. 2:12 HCSB
Wait for it…
But now in Christ Jesus, you were far away have been brought near by the blood of the Messiah. Eph. 2:13 HCSB
Who do you know who needs this hope? Who is stuck in the cliffhanger, seemingly hopeless, who you can say: Wait for it! …Wait for Him, who saves us by grace and makes us alive again?
Or maybe it’s you. You need that reminder today.
You need to remember that He’s brought you near through His blood. That he loves and cherishes you.
And that you can exhale, and relax in His arms.