I can’t shake this story from my friends in Lemonade International. I just want it not to be true. This is not the created intention for this 15 year old girl wanting to escape the clutches of evil. Deep, deep loss. My heart saddens for her family, friends and community. Christ have mercy.
What do we think of hope in a time and place of such darkness? As followers of the Christ, we have only one thought in regards to hope. Hope is our home, and moment to moment we realize we are not home. We long, we yearn, we wait . . . we hope. Our Hope is in a Kingdom that has come, and a Kingdom that is yet coming. Hope is our home, but we are not yet completely home.
C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity puts it this way in his chapter on Hope:
“Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. . . . If I find in myself a desire in which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. . . . Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing. . . . I must keep alive in myself the desire for my true country, which I shall not find til after death; I must make it the main object of life to press on to that other country and to help others to do the same.” (p. 136-137)
Today I mourn with La Limonada, and today I Hope with La Limonada. We are not home, but we don’t leave this world as it is.
What do we do against such heavy darkness when hope feels like a faint echo? What do we do when the stench and sting of death pierces our senses? We do what we have always done, we follow the Resurrector. We do what is written in our soul, we read words of life. We in no uncertain terms, RISE AGAIN! We know no other way, we are people of the Resurrection.
So hear is my prayer today for my friends serving in La Limonada, go in the Spirit of the One who created it all and proclaim your hope this day. Proclaim the Hope of the One who is Resurrected. Serve, love, give mercy, sing, dance, worship, feed, educate, clothe, persevere amidst long suffering and all in the name of the Hope that has come. Show the children what Hope looks like. They long for the ‘other’ country, a place where it is as it should be. Reveal to them the Hope just on the other side of the veil. Let the light come in and pierce the darkness. God as you once did, I pray you push away the stone in La Limonada and release your Resurrection of Hope.
When I have no more words to say in this regard, I fall on the words of my brother who has passed on to Kingdom fullness who knew this hope full well. These are some of Mark Palmer’s final words and I pray them over La Limonada this day:
“When it seems that hopefulness is the least appropriate response in this situation, let it rise up even more. Whisper your hope when you lie down at night; scream your hope when you wake in the morning. Live your hope as if it is the one and only thing that sustains you in this ravaged world. You will not be disappointed.”
May Hope be your home today in La Limonada, even though you are not yet home.