Another celebrity death was reported this week. The headline read, “Kate Spade, legendary handbag designer found dead of suicide.” Family and friends are asking the question everyone has at times like these, “Why?” She was 55, married and had a 13 year old daughter. She was well liked and extremely successful. She joins a recent series of high-profile suicides.
Despair and depression are no respecter of persons. It happens with famous and infamous, in big cities and small communities. Just this week at Journey, I have spoken with three families who had family members recently attempting suicide. Anxiety and depression affect 6.7% of the population (16.1 million) age 18 and older. Middle age women age 40-50 have the highest rate of depression (1 in 8). Hope can be lost.
This weekend we return to the summer series, Miracles. We’re discovering that everyone struggles with something. No one is exempted forever, even really good people we know and love. This weekend we explore a passage (John 5:1-5) where Jesus questions a man, “Do you want to get well?” He has been an invalid for 38 years and given up hope he might ever walk again. Then he meets Jesus; he didn’t even know Jesus’ name at the time.
Some of you reading this today may have found yourselves somewhat like the man in this miraculous Jesus story? Maybe you once had had a crippling handicap from birth and needed a miracle medical treatment? Maybe a life experience in a failed marriage or failed business venture or failed friendship has left you empty and crippled inside emotionally. Maybe hope was lost in some period of life.
There are others who will read this today and may find they are similar to this man in Jesus story in a different way. Maybe you don’t consider yourself very knowledgable about God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. Maybe the spiritual instructions found in the Bible are pages and pages of information you never explored. Maybe the Church scene is an unfamiliar place for you, just like it was for this man.
If any of this rings true for you or someone you know I hope you will consider checking out the whole story this weekend at Journey worship. Come and grab a seat with anticipation that God may actually be here in our midst and answer some of your big questions in life. Things that led to your personal handicap. Everybody has one of some kind or another. It’s just the deal we all get by living in this kind of world that is unclear where to find hope that lasts forever.
There is an answer. Jesus is the answer and He will bring everyone hope. This is Good News that we can accept and share with others. Jesus really is for us and not against us. I know summer is always a busy time but this may be a lesson we all desperately need to hear and share with someone. Give this a try and see if God might actually restore whatever has been lost. He may ask us again, “Do you want to get well?”
I believe in miracles. Do you?