Offering Hope When All Else Contradicts
Restoration: (noun) the action of returning something to a former owner, place, or condition. However, last week I read “Restoration offers hope when everything else in life contradicts.” This was a concept I could easily wrap my mind around.
Hope was offered through Cedar Hills this year when we restored our Sunday class kids and youth ministries. This happened after the derecho when many were unsure of life due to troubles regarding cleanup and rebuilding. When the restoration process began we weren’t sure what it would look like. How many kids per classroom? Do we limit class sizes? Would we have willing teachers? Should we focus on storm clean up instead? Would kids come? However, through prayer (“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” ~ Matthew 6:33) we determined it was the right time and path to pursue. Now, we’ve seen hope being restored and it looks like this: “I have kids in my class again, Mom!” “My teacher taught me that God will give me what I need.” “I have joy in my heart again,” stated one teacher after hearing the kids tell her the gospel story! Even a simple, “Cathy! You’re here with us today again?!” from an online class student demonstrates such renewed hope. Restoration has been offered to other Cedar Rapids ministry families when they’ve joined our church family for a week or two for personal retreat and renewal. Teens have experienced restoration by hearing scripture stories again because they have not been able to attend their home church due to COVID restrictions. Some days we still don’t know what the path to restoration should look like or feel like, but we do know that 1 John 5:4 states: “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.”