There are people who find the tenets of Christianity embarrassing or untenable—miracles, the virgin birth, the bodily resurrection of Jesus. In most cases they are religious people but who cannot affirm the Apostle’s Creed. They do, then, cherry pick their way through the New Testament to create a false gospel made up of their own unbiblical values.
If I felt like I was a sinner, it’s because I was a sinner. If it felt like all the things I was resting my hope in for my own righteousness were disintegrating under my feet, it’s because by His grace, they were disintegrating. “He inflicts wounds that heal,” I remember Tim Keller saying, and God was most definitely breaking my dependence on my own self-righteousness, so He could demonstrate His own righteousness as the justification for my life and salvation.
Although 85% of the population of Madagascar identifies as Christian, Tank says the gospel message is often eroded. “Religiosity mixed with a health and wealth message is very challenging right now. Due to that, many people are being tossed back and forth, deceived and blinded. Lots of syncretism where people are trying different religions and hoping that maybe one will work and sort out all of life’s problems, especially poverty.”
In an instant, grief and hope, joy and sorrow intersected. I learned that grief and hope aren’t parallel streets that we travel down based on life’s circumstances. They intersect. When God guides us down paths of grief, He isn’t leading us away from hope, He’s trying to lead us to the point where those streets intersect so that we never believe the lie that our joy is tied to our circumstances.
We invite you to sign up to receive our daily devotionals during the season of Lent—February 14 – March 28. Each day there is scripture and a meditation to help you reflect on the hope and glory provided through Christ’s death and resurrection.