When men fall…hope endures.

burned-out.jpg

I’m still tired.

As I sit here in my office listening to music I can’t escape the odd silence that surrounds me. It’s a contradiction really. Music playing, but I here nothing…time standing still as I sit and ponder the realities I am involved in. As I look back at what has transpired these past few days my brain fumbles…Friday seems like it was weeks ago. Sunday came and never in my life did I think that I would have to stand in front of people and share the kind of news that was given. They don’t really teach you about how to handle things like that in Bible College.

As I watched the shock give way to confusion, the confusion give way to anger, and the anger give way to sadness – I realized something…God is still God. It seems like a simple statement, but the truth is it’s a deeper concept than any of us can fully grasp. The reality is, what has happened does not change who God is. What has happened does not change who Jesus is. What it does change is us…and what that change entails is determined by how we handle this painful time.

It would be easy to rest in anger, pain, guilt, hate, irritation, hopelessness, and sadness…and believe me it is OK to feel all of those things…but when we rest in those things…when we give in to the negative we slowly become hardened. We become mere memories of our former selves…and we loose sight of the truth that is right before our eyes.

Romans 5:4-5 says, “We also rejoice in our sufferings, because We know that suffering produces endurance; endurance, character, and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has been poured out into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given to us.”

I believe in hope. I believe it does not disappoint us. I believe it is a gift from God. I believe that in this time we have a unique opportunity to be honest with our spouses and friends about our feelings, thoughts, struggles, and weaknesses. I believe we have an opportunity to bless particular families in ways they could have never expected. I believe we have a chance to learn from the mistakes of others. I believe we have a chance to rise above and show how beautiful the bride of Christ really is. I believe that it is in this hope that we are able to see the church at it’s best.

Satan has not won…and I will not stop fighting.

Although the future is unclear, I believe more than ever that God is calling me to be a person of hope, compassion, truth, and love. And I know it is in those things that I am able to surrender and trust God to lead me through the battles. Let our attention not be on those that have caused the pain, but on those that are wounded by it. We have to keep singing. Let us crawl into the lap of God and weep…let his compassion wash over us and give us strength…allow him to sing over us…as he prepares us for the celebration of victory that is Easter. I refuse to let Satan steal that from us.

My friends…my hope and prayer is that we find time to rest, that we are honest with how we feel and wise in how we share it, that we are realistic in that all of this can’t be fixed in a week, month, or even a year…my hope and prayer is that those that have been affected by all that has happened will be willing to show patience to each other, that we can love one another and serve one another, that we can wash each others feet, that we can help one another up out of the mud and allow God to lead us forward…together as one body…united…broken but beautiful.

I don’t know when this silence will break…or when confusion will give way to clarity…or even when anger will give way to peace…What I do know is that there will come a day when we will begin to hear something faintly around us…it will be a sweet sound, one of celebration…one of victory…until that time comes however, know that I will keep fighting…I will keep pursuing…I will rest in hope and trust God to lead me through the battles…and I hope you will join me in the journey.

When men fall we weep…but never forget that hope endures.

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13 thoughts on “When men fall…hope endures.

  1. Christopher,

    That was beautiful. Driving home on Saturday trying to get back into “mom” mode and feeling so confused, one thing kept repeating in my thoughts:

    To trust in God is to rest in the divine mystery.

    Thank you for sharing with us what God shared with you in India.

  2. Wow Christopher, this is absolutely beautiful and FULL of truth! I trust in God through this and am so glad we have you in a lead position. Thank you for posting this, you have a way with words.

  3. Christopher,

    I am so glad God sent YOU to US. Your hope, your love, your compassion and your leadership through all of this.

    Thank you –

    …and Thank you Jesus!

  4. Christopher – I am not a Revolution attender, but my heart breaks for the pain you all are going through. But at the same time I am struck by the undercurrent of faith, hope and love that runs through the blogs and comments of you and your congregation. Ironically, I find comfort in the unshakable faith you all have expressed. The Christ we follow is bigger than the circumstances; bigger then the personalities that we so admire. Why do such things happen? I don’t know; but when the result of such a devastating betrayal is not anger and disillusionment, but instead a sharpening of focus on the one who will never disappoint, I know that Revolution will emerge as a stronger and even more effective tool used to transform lives in Long Beach. Blessings to you and the Revolution.

  5. I went into sunday thinking this is going to be one strange day. It was at times, but it was also quite a surprisingly good day. Moments were sad (and so was I at times) but watching the video I felt HOPE, and a TON of it.

    You did well on Sunday and I know people appreciate your honesty.

    Though the future may be a bit cloudy, I haven’t felt any worry. Looking back on past sermons we’ve been prepared for this upcoming journey and we’ll take it in stride and keep on preaching the word.

  6. Your second Paragraph hit the spot.
    The truth is still the truth.

    God will continue to use you Chris. Be strong and courageous. Remember your friends and accountability partners. They are all here to help in any way, myself included. I will be in Downey tomorrow, thursday thru saturday. Call me

  7. What has happened? And why is it that when ever I call you don’t have the energy to talk because “it’s gonna be a long conversation”. That doesn’t make me very happy. It has been forever since we’ve talked and a butt load of stuff has happened in both of our lives. lets catch up. (503)213-3494. Leave a message with the British lady and tell me the best time to call you.

  8. While I can appreciate all the calls to prayer and support, at some point the church needs to get a sack and confront the predator.
    We should not continue the failed church policies of the past and send em packin’ off to the next unsuspecting group, organization or church, but stop him in his tracks.
    Mr. Trotters last employer of record has a responsibility to pray for him and also to track him like a dog for the next several years and make every legal attempt to prevent him from spreading his poison and leaving devastated families in his wake.
    Our nations churches have been acting cowardly for years because we have not stopped these abuses of power.

    IMHO

  9. Ed, so you’re saying it is wise (for the church) to use the tithing to get involved legally? Because *legal attempts* are not free and the church will probably benefit from using our resources to help others.

    It’s not about growing a *sack*… it’s more about learning from the past (mistakes) and moving forward to improve things for the better of the whole church. Which I trust is happening now. Change (for the better) will not happen overnight.

    The best thing we can do is to continue to pray and trust that god will deal with his actions/choices.

  10. Angelo, sometimes learning from the past means having to grow a pair where one did not exist before. And what does tithing have to do with it? We spend “God’s money” on all kinds of useless crap.

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