It's Holy Week. As we finished up our Lent series at One Life City Church, I had the opportunity to preach about redemption. This felt like a hard task after learning about the school shooting in Nashville last week.
All week long, I sat with these questions... What authority do I have to speak of hope when there are parents in the midst of intense suffering after losing their child? Or when there is a community that is still reeling from the trauma of surviving a mass shooting? How do we talk about redemption when the wound is still so fresh?
The risk is that we might be tempted to ignore the pain – to push down our own pain or to minimize the pain of others. This is not actually what God desires. It’s not helpful or healthy, and it doesn’t lead us to the redemption that God wants for us. If we’re unwilling to engage the pain, we miss out on the healing.
The tension in moments like this is to hold onto the hope of redemption so that you don’t get trapped in despair without avoiding the very real and present pain that is being experienced now.
If you'd like to hear the message of hope that I spoke to my community, you can watch the video below.
Or listen to the audio here.
As a bonus, you can find the reflection on John 16 that I mentioned in my sermon below.
As we move throughout Holy Week and prepare our hearts for Easter, I bless you as you engage the areas of pain in your life with the Spirit as your guide while holding onto the hope of redemption.