Jay's eDevotionals  

Mar 27

Hurt and HOPE in Our Fallen World

Several weeks ago I encountered a startling news story about a man named Jeff Bush, who lived in Florida. On a quiet evening, he was lying in bed when a sinkhole opened beneath his bedroom and swallowed Mr. Bush without warning. His brother attempted a rescue, but to no avail. The next day, workers tried to find him as they probed the depth of the dangerous hole. His body was deemed non-recoverable.

The extraordinary episode of Mr. Bush’s bizarre demise vividly reminds us that our fallen world is unpredictable, dangerous and deadly. Other news stories and life experiences underline the fact that life is fragile and fleeting. A family was passing through the Birmingham airport when an information sign toppled on a 10-yr-old boy and instantly took his life. A woman in Brunswick, Georgia, was strolling her 13-month-old son home at 11 am when two teenagers approached her and demanded money. When she did not comply, they shot her baby to death and wounded the heartbroken mother. As you observe the news and review history, we must conclude that this fallen world is a hurtful place. Jesus affirmed the diagnosis about our dangerous environment when He said, “In this world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

In our hurt-filled world, we need a Good Shepherd in Jesus to be our constant companion and guide. Easter’s empty tomb shouts “Trust Me! I will take care of you. Since I can conquer death, I can help you through life.” Easter proclaims the message of ultimate hope – that in Christ, there is much more to life than our current existence and God’s power will triumph over evil forces and our ultimate enemy of death.

There is an intriguing monument sitting on the western edge of Spain which looks over the expansive Atlantic Ocean. The ancient billboard dates back to the early 1300s. Chiseled in stone is the Latin phrase, “Ne plus ultra” which means: “No more beyond.” The Spaniards believed their western coast bordered the end of the world and nothing existed beyond them except water and desolation. Then came 1492, Columbus discovered a new world beyond Spain. Afterwards, people noted the absurdity and arrogance of the statement “Ne plus ultra – No more beyond.” When the first coins were minted in the new world, a bold slogan appeared on the currency: “Plus Ultra – More Beyond!”

When we trust King Jesus and grant Him access to our central belief system, He stamps upon our hearts the proclamation of “Plus Ultra – More Beyond!” There is more beyond the grave. There is a new world coming. There is life eternal. There is resurrection. There is HOPE!

My beloved friends, in our fallen world full of broken hearts, continue to share the good news of Easter that because of Jesus, we have the hope of “Plus Ultra – More Beyond.”

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