The Knife Angel
In the Christmas story, an angel appears to Mary to announce to her the gift of a son Jesus. In the Easter story, it is an angel that meets the women at the tomb of Jesus to announce that Jesus has risen from the dead.
Angels bring Hope - with a capital “H”. The Knife Angel is a bringer of Hope.
Hope is not optimism.
There was no optimism at the tomb of Jesus on that first Easter morning.
The captured Ukrainian solder was correct when he said, “Your hope should never obstruct your vision of reality”. Optimism suggests all we need do is look on the bright side of life. But life can be very black. History does not necessarily move in a good direction. We cannot say that "history is on our side". History can be ugly.
Hope is not a mere emotion.
Sometimes it is not an emotion at all. Bringing change can be very costly. There will be moments of saying: “I can’t go on”. We need something that helps us through those moments.
Hope is not positivity.
President Trump bought into the idea of “the power of positive thinking“. There can be benefits but we also need to to be honest when things go wrong. Honest assessment is a good place to start. Hope can be the fruit of deep disquiet.
Hope is the opposite of despair.
But perhaps we only discover hope when we have met despair. There is no buying hope on the cheap. Hope has looked into the abyss and somehow or somewhere finds strength to go on. Hope can only exist when things are “hopeless".
In the Jewish scriptures the psalmist says that God is near to the brokenhearted. God is on the side of all who are poor whether that be in body, mind or spirit. When God wants to change the world he sends in the meek, the mourners, the justice-hungry. True change starts at the grass roots, with you and me.
Hope is a decision
It is the decision to work for a better future. The promise of the Bible is that you can know that God is with you, that God has conquered even death, and God, who has conquered death can help us conquer in the struggles and strains of this life.
The Knife Angel: Bringer of Hope
Many have already made that decision. May the message of the “Knife Angel" bring ever increasing and deepening Hope.
In its profound beauty, the Knife Angel appeals to us silently and longingly, waiting for us to respond in deed and word.