About six weeks ago, I embarked on an epic journey – a bicycle ride from Key West, Florida to Calais, Maine, on the Canadian Border. I am now almost half-way through the journey, and will be approaching Southeastern Virginia by the end of the week.
Why am I doing this? The short answer is, Hope and Courage. This is a theme that has been resonating within me for a while now. As I look at the world around me, I see a desperate hopelessness in the eyes of so many people. In a time when Godless materialism has become the pervasive worldview in our culture, people are looking for Hope in what seems to be a random, pointless existence.
As Christians, we have an answer for that hopelessness. There is so much more to life than what we encounter in this lonely world. God wants us to be in fellowship with Him, and, to that end, he sent His Son into this world with a message of hope and salvation. That salvation is not a promise of comfort and material prosperity in this life. It is actually something far greater than that. It is a promise of life eternal, in His presence.
With stock markets crashing, and the Coronavirus news spreading fear and panic around the world, it’s a good time to adjust our focus and look at the big picture. Stocks rise and fall, and pandemics come and go, but Eternal Life is Forever. If you’ve placed your faith in Jesus Christ, you will find the troubles of this world are suddenly not so troubling after all. Yes, you may lose money, or you may fall ill, but you will never be alone, in this world or the next, if you are walking with God.
Courage goes hand-in-hand with Hope. As the Psalmist wrote, “Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all ye that hope in Jehovah” (Psalm 31:24).
Let our hearts take courage, and let us walk in confidence, knowing that we walk as pilgrims through this world. As I bicycle northward up the Atlantic Coast, my prayer is that this message of Hope and Courage will penetrate the veil of hopelessness and fear that darkens the vision of so many people. And as I write this email, I pray that you too will find a fresh wind of Hope and Courage enlivening your own souls.