“But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” 1 Corinthians 15:20-22
Last summer one of the great heroes in my life passed away. My grandmother MiMi was an amazing woman—a tremendous example for me to follow. I would love to be half the woman that my MiMi was.
Sin has made a mess of God’s good creation. Death is one of the consequences of sin. Our bodies wear out and we don’t go on living forever. Over the last two years of MiMi’s life, her body began to give out as her health became worse and worse. Finally, in God’s time she breathed her last breath on this earth. By God’s grace, I was privileged to spend some precious time with MiMi by her bedside in the days just before her death.
I can remember being overwhelmed with sadness over the fact that I was losing someone I so dearly loved. At the same time I remember being filled with hope because of MiMi’s hope. I know that I will see MiMi again. The next time we meet, we will both be healthy and whole. We will be perfect and never again have to say goodbye.
For Christians, hope is not just wishful thinking. Hope is not wishing upon a star. For Christians, hope is a strong and confident assurance. Hope is the total confidence that God will do everything He has promised He will do.
As Libby and Jimboy have reminded us year after year: “someone is coming.” Christ is coming again. Paul tells us in Philippians 3 that when He comes, He will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. The Christian’s hope can never fail!
“How can you be totally sure when you look at all the horrible stuff that has happened in your life and out in the world that someday God is going to make it all right? How can you not just hope so, but be absolutely sure that in spite of your own failures, God loves you and will never let you go? How can you know that when you face death it is not the end? Only if you know that Jesus rose from the dead and therefore so will you.” Tim Keller