Relationships under Lockdown ...
Wednesday, Oct 28, 2020. How are you feeling with relationships under lockdown? While the second wave of infections with the Corona virus is flooding many countries, people get more and more annoyed and nervous around the measures which are taken by governments and medical institutions. We are called to lock down our meetings, our interactions, our relationships.
Life is going on, though. But how? Are you out of work now? Are you blocked with your regular activities? How is the lockdown or partial lockdown influencing your activities, your interactions, your feelings? And what is God's role in all of this. How is your relationship to the Lord evolving under these strange conditions?
Living hope …
As a starting point, let us read a passage from the first letter of Peter, the apostle. He writes:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith —more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1, 3ff)
Let us first note that Christian life has always been under trials. This applied to the first Christians, who had to find their way in the Roman empire about 2000 years ago. But it also applied to humans everywhere on the planet. Life is a trial, with many of its constituents. And we would be wrong if we would not clearly acknowledge the situation.
Where do we get our hope from? What is it your hope is based on? Is your hope on your own abilities? Is it on your savings? Is it your achievements from the past years or from 30 years ago? Are you living from former glory, perhaps something you did very well in the past?
Invitation to Hope …
You and me, we are invited to a hope which is beyond all worldly things alone. It is a hope which is beyond life and death in this world. It is a hope which is built on Christ Jesus, on his life, his words, his death and his resurrection. He is the word, which was at the beginning of creation, and which is beyond time, beyond death, beyond all what causes suffering and fear and destruction in this world.
Christian faith sees the world as a difficult place, for various reasons. It is God's creation, and as such it is fantastic and good. But it is also the world which is characterized by distance to God. We are lost in space, and here we are without the connection to the origin and goal of all creation, which is God himself.
God does not want to be general philosophy. He does not want to be the creator only - though he IS the creator. He wants to be close to our heart. He wants to be our love and desire, our target, our father, our friend. Christian theology teaches God as the one who saves, as the one who loves, as the one who suffers. He wants to be very close to you, wherever you are and whatever your own personal suffering is. He is the living hope, for all circumstances. Today and tomorrow! (Roland Potthast)