While walking toward my mailbox, my neighbor called to me. As I crossed the street, she reassured me we would keep social distance, but wanted to show me something.

My curiosity was peaked. I saw nothing except her beautiful azaleas and flowers, an art gallery for me with free admission each time I head out my front door.

“Look at my Easter irises. The deep purple is for sorrow-but look here. One in white for the resurrection.”

The stately flowers took my breath away and the significance of a lone white flower was not lost on either of us. Friday held sorrow, but on Sunday, true to God’s promise, we would celebrate life and hope.

Most of us are self-isolating and daily living has dramatically changed. Some who have traveled or exposed to Covid-19, are in quarantine. Wearing masks, gloves, and keeping a six-foot physical distance from others are new practices when we leave our home. Protective shield guards have been installed at some check-outs and entrance to stores is by controlled count.

And we ask questions: When will schools and stores re-open? How long before we gather for corporate worship? What will it look like if we ever get to dine in a restaurant again? Should we cancel our summer family reunion?

Our new normal of boundaries and distance prevail during our pandemic. Our new normal is uncertainty.

Except when it comes to hope. Hope arises to make an appearance regardless of where we are, what’s closed, or what’s open.

Hope: not wishful thinking as “I hope it won’t rain tomorrow.” Or an expectation, “I hope my dessert doesn’t flop.”

But Biblical hope:

Confident God keeps His promises. (Jer. 29:11)

Knowing His faithfulness never waivers. (Psalm 86:15; Lam. 3:22-23)

His grace is present for every moment. (2 Cor. 12:9)

He is trustworthy. (Psalm 145:13)

His steadfast love is an anchor.

In  My Heart Cries Out, Paul Tripp writes. “I have hope today because you, God, are not distant.”

Truth: There is no social distancing with God and He is profoundly close. I may not leave my house or I may feel limited in where I go, but I move in hope. With uncertainty and sorrow around us, hope stands tall.

How have you seen hope arise, or clung to hope during our pandemic?

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13 NIV

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