I celebrated with the rest of the family as my niece turned 2. Finally, I can stop counting in months. I was seriously running out of fingers and toes to count on.
I loved seeing the pure unadulterated joy on her face when she saw her presents and the complete love and trust she has for her mommy and daddy and two big brothers. It did my heart good.
But I also remembered Adrian Peterson’s 2-year old son who was allegedly beaten to death by his mother’s boyfriend. My heart hurts and I have questions I can’t answer.
Who does that to a 2-year old? For what possible reason?
I know we live in a broken world filled with broken people. Creation groans for deliverance and for everything to be made right. Too many defenseless and helpless children suffer, too many people go to bed hungry, too many marriages fall apart, and too many die way too young.
Then I remember how this story ends. I cheated and read the last page. It’s about God wiping away every tear from our eyes. It’s about a new Jerusalem, a new heaven and a new earth where lambs lie safely next to lions, where others is no need for sun, moon, or stars because God is there.
I love what the guest pastor said. God didn’t want an only child, so He chose us to be conformed to the image of His Son Jesus and become heirs with Jesus to all the promises of God.
I love this version of Romans 8:29-30: “God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son. The Son stands first in the line of humanity he restored. We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in him. After God made that decision of what his children should be like, he followed it up by calling people by name. After he called them by name, he set them on a solid basis with himself. And then, after getting them established, he stayed with them to the end, gloriously completing what he had begun.”
That’s what keeps me going in the midst of so much suffering and sadness. That’s why I can find joy in everything. Because ultimately Love does win.