Jesus saved me while I sat at the kitchen table with my mother. I was just a boy, still obsessed with Power Rangers and Lego. Looking back 25 years, I don't know how much I understood then. But all that I've seen in the years since, what I have felt and experienced, has shown me that Jesus isn't just real. He is who he said he was.
I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. (John 17:23)
Jesus saved us from the pit of despair when we lost Levi, when we were told that we would have to wait to greet this child.
Jesus saved us in 2019 when my visa was refused and we were facing a separation without a clear end.
Jesus saved us when we didn't get paid one month while living in a country where we didn't speak the language.
None of this was easy. I'm not even sure I could say that it was bearable. There were days where everything felt crashing down. When life felt more Psalm 42-44 than 49. But in the midst of everything, there was this hope.
Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? (Matthew 7:9-10)
Even the worst of situations, when you are in Christ, is bread and fish. It's never a stone or a serpent. It might not feel that way. It might feel like the bread has been turned into charcoal. Or perhaps what feels like a snakebite is actually the spines hidden in a catfish's fins.
But there is still nourishment to be found. If not happiness than joy. If not calm, than peace. I could never have known this as I went back to playing with Lego after praying with my mother, but I am so glad that I can know this now as I wait and plan and hope. As we pray for a house to be provided near our new church. As we pray for my new visa application to be accepted.