Finding Hope in the Midst of Despair
Written by Plant With Purpose on April 3, 2015 in General
The hope of the coming King captivated all of Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. The crowds grew in expectation shouting “Save us now!” as Jesus made his triumphal entry into the city. Their longing for freedom, liberty, and empowerment was about to be realized.
The twelve who had walked beside him for three years must have been caught up in this joyful frenzy. They too witnessed His triumphal entry and believed He was the promised one, the one who would restore Israel to its place of honor. But their hope quickly turned to despair: first His arrest, then the trial, beating, and crucifixion. This wasn’t how it was supposed to go. This wasn’t how the coming Kingdom was meant to arrive. At the crucifixion, the twelve scattered. As their world was shattered, they went into hiding. For three days they were distraught, hopeless, and alone. But even through this darkness hope was budding forth.
There are certain plants that expend all their energy and existence to send up a single shoot that flowers and then quickly dies. But through this death comes life. In the midst of despair, there is hope for new life.
Jesus had prepared His followers for the events that this week held. He told them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” (John 12:23-24).
During the three days that Jesus was in the tomb, His followers felt defeated and unsure of what was to come. Jesus’ death was unavoidable and absolutely necessary to pay the penalty for our sins. But just as a seed that is buried in the ground brings about new life in the form of a flower, Jesus’ death and burial paves the way for new life for all who believe. On Easter, we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. Hope is triumphant—the Living God gives us life and life abundant!
One theme of Holy Week—finding hope in the midst of despair—reminds us of the lives being impacted internationally by Plant With Purpose. Our partnering farmers live daily in the hope that Jesus brings. They experience the renewing cycle of death and rebirth: trees sending forth new growth, fruit ripening on the vines, and buried seeds sprouting through the soil. In the midst of desperate circumstances our partnering families find hope in the fruit to come, as they put all of their trust in the One who rose again.
This Easter, remember with us the hope that is eternal and the One who makes all things new.
Rejoice in hope, for He is Risen!