Encouragement From The Word

Symbols of hope

Perhaps you’ve been walking in your neighbourhood more often lately.  I know I have.  And if so, you’ve probably seen various neighbours’ windows decorated with rainbows.

I went to the all-knowing Google the other day and typed in, “Why are people putting rainbows in their windows”, only to discover mid-search that I’m not the first person to ‘Google’ that question.

It turns out that this trend started in Italy, accompanied by the phrase, andra tutto benne – everything will be alright – when the Coronavirus problem got serious in that country.  And it spread across many countries in the western world, including here in Canada.

Some Christians may be uncomfortable placing rainbows in their windows these days, because of the fear of misunderstanding: a certain demographic some time ago decided to appropriate a variant of the rainbow as its primary symbol, and not everybody understands the difference.

For followers of Jesus, of course, the rainbow is a sign of God’s promise never to destroy the earth again by flood.  It’s a sign of hope.  Indeed, ultimately, everything will be alright.

But if you want to try something different, why not do so?  Some of my social media friends decided to create stained glass Christian images in their windows using masking tape and paint that can later be removed.

With today being Good Friday, and Easter being around the corner, we could use images like the empty cross, or the heart, or even the anchor.  We can even use words, provided they are painted (or printed out) large enough for passersby to see.

Many of our neighbours are hurting and lonely.  A lot of people are looking for hope, looking for something stable to which they may cling in this season of uncertainty.  Consider using your front window as a witness.  When this is all over, who knows what seeds God may have planted in people, through our silent witness, to draw them to him who is unchanging?

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13.8, NLT).

By the way, if you don’t have an online church ‘home’, feel free to watch our live-streaming of worship on Good Friday, and on Easter Sunday, at 10:00 a.m.  You don’t need an account to watch at http://www.facebook.com/stpaulsnobleton.  You can watch later at http://www.stpaulsnobleton.ca/sermons.

Encouragement From The Word

Keep your eyes on Jesus

Have you ever looked up the definition of the term ‘debacle’?  Loosely defined, it’s a great big failure.

It seems we don’t need to look very far these days to find an illustration for that!

On both sides of the border, politics is providing its share of debacles.  Organizations are seeing leadership debacles. Companies are seeing economic debacles.

Where can we turn to find something better?

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  So do not be attracted by strange, new ideas.  Your strength comes from God’s grace” (Hebrews 13.8-9a, NLT).

Too often, as followers of Jesus, we are easily drawn in to all the troubles of the world.  Indeed, we should be active in the world, and pray for the world, but we should keep our eyes on Jesus, on whom we can depend all the time.

Let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.  We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith” (Hebrews 12.1b-2a, NLT).

Don’t be so heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good, but likewise, don’t be so earthly minded that you lose sight of heaven.