I read this morning that they’ve stopped actively searching for any survivors of last week’s Marine helicopter crash off the coast of Hawaii.
My heart has been a mess of sorrow since last Friday morning when I first heard about it from a dear friend, whose brother-in-law is among the men missing. He was here, and now he isn’t. Just like that. Miles of ocean have been covered in the search, but nothing substantial has been recovered.
The discovery of 3 empty inflated life rafts feels like a particularly brutal find.
As I’ve been praying and weeping over this horrible situation, my one word has come repeatedly to mind. I’ve hung my head muttering, asking, how does one have hope in a situation that seems hopeless? How do you pray for the best possible outcome when you can’t imagine there’s the potential for anything reminiscent of a silver lining?
Christie’s first book will be on bookshelves in a couple of weeks, and as I was reading it the other night, I came across this quote,
“God walks with them, always already in the darkest places. He is especially present in the very places we imagine he cannot be.” ~Christie Purifoy, Roots & Sky
The silver lining I’m looking for isn’t the possibility of a positive circumstance, but the ever-present person of Jesus Christ. Even in the folds of despair His presence still shines. This morning, the words of Zechariah called we who believe, “prisoners of hope”.
Return to your stronghold, O prisoners of hope. (Zechariah 10:12)
These words arrest me. What is a prisoner, but someone confined or kept in the custody of another. God keeps us in His custody, we are confined by the Holy.
When the weight of hopelessness presses in, when fear and doubt and trepidation wrack our hearts, we are told to return to our place of strength, our place of refuge and protection–to be kept in the custody of the ONE who is Hope.
Return, O Prisoners of hope.
We who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf… (Hebrews 6:18-20)
Return to your stronghold.
The stronghold is where we surrender, where the prisoners of hope receive a life sentence for eternity.
Return to your stronghold, O prisoners of hope.
Let your comfort be in your Keeper, your Stronghold who has gone before you, and goes with you into the darkness even now.
*A Meal Train has been started for the Campell family (Christie’s sister, and children). If you’d like a tangible way to show some love and hospitality to these hurting souls, CLICK HERE.