Out of the Hopelessness
But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. Revelation 11:11
It’s not uncommon for those who’re addicted to feel like they’ve burned bridges with everyone they’ve ever loved. When they’re in jail or in need, they want to turn to family, but they can’t, because those relationships have been destroyed. This isn’t without cause of course. From the family’s perspective, the addict has failed repeatedly and hurt them repeatedly. They’ve come to know nothing but addiction, pain, and betrayal. They know they can’t trust the addicted because he (or she) will relapse and then lie, cheat, and steal all over again. It’s been a pattern that they’ve come to know, perhaps for years, and they just can’t believe that anything will ever change. The addict, and any chance of a healthy relationship with him, seems hopeless.
I’ve been there. When I got out of treatment back in 2014, I knew that things were going to be different. My wife wasn’t convinced of this though. All she’d known was 15 years of repeated failures. She knew from past behavior that I was going to continue my cycle of short-term sobriety and relapse. I was never going to change. I was hopeless.
Then God did something to both of us. He breathed life into us, resurrecting me from death to life and resurrecting our marriage. In my addiction, we were headed for divorce. In recovery, I have a new life and we have a new relationship. We now love and like each other and, in fact, we’re facilitating a small group at our church on healthy marriages. We don’t have life all figured out and we don’t do marriage perfectly, but what was once dead, is now very much alive.
This is God’s business. It’s what he does. In today’s passage, we see this power on display as John continued in his prophetic vision. In the passage, John described two future prophets whom the world will kill and dishonor by allowing their bodies to lie in the street for three days as the world celebrates. Then though, God will resurrect them, turning despair and hopelessness into victory.
Again, this is the business that God is in. The very power that raised Christ from the dead is available to us. If we’re sick of the old life and if we’re tired of the hopelessness, then we must daily do what it takes to abandon the old life so that we may follow God, living in the new one. Only in doing so may we may find resurrection and hope for the future.