There are few places in the world that could possibly be more beautiful than the sidewalks of Asheville on a summer morning. It was here that I sat outside a coffee shop, having agreed to meet an acquaintance for a conversation, or more like a lecture.
In other words, there was very little room for interaction or dialogue. He was more interested in explaining to me the way the universe works. He had it all figured out. The paradigms and designs of the inter-connected web of astrophysics and the mysteries of science had been solved by his genius.
Five minutes in to the conversation I realized that he had figured it all out. He’d arrived, and he knew the answers to questions I’ve never even imagined to ask! His degrees on the wall could prove his intellectual aptitude, and his use of words with several syllables were nauseatingly intimidating!
When he came up for air, he asked me what I thought.
I told him none of it mattered to anybody.
He seemed taken aback from my sentence. An awkward silence suggested that I elaborate…
“When you are sitting beside the casket of your loved one, begging for answers; When the pain of evil seems to triumph…what Hope can you lean into?”
I continued, “At the end of the day, none of your scientific theories carry any weight or relevance to the heart that has been devastated.”
I explained further, “This is my dilemma: People look to spiritual leaders for answers. But they’re not looking for a comprehensive formulaic equation or diatribe on philosophical theorems. They’re not looking for a systematic theology. They want tangible, flesh and blood – Monday-morning Hope.”
And the answer for the Hope that I can share (with brutal, glorious honesty) remains in the Name of the One who conquered death and rose victoriously to defeat evil. And this hope is free and beautiful and accessible in the darkest hours of our lives. The invitation of Jesus is to come and rest, taste and see, go and tell; “Hope remains.”
That’s all I know. That’s a summary of everything I have to offer anyone who is searching for a reason to keep going…