Disclaimer: I just made a human error by deleting an important chunk of what I just wrote for this post as I was editing the image. It is very frustrating! I don’t know if I can re-create it, but I’m going to try! At least the whole post wasn’t deleted!
I’ve been thinking about Harry Potter. I’m about to finish Sorcerer’s Stone, and I’m going to try and get through all 7 before November. Harry, as you know, is a fictional character, but I think there’s some powerful things we can draw from JK Rowling’s amazing story. Harry’s Bffs Ron and Hermione help Harry to fulfill his calling, and were it not for them I don’t think he’d have been successful against Voldemort. A good story is just that – good. Good wins out over evil, yet sometimes we see the bad guy “winning.”
I wrote about faith as small as a mustard seed moving mountains not too many posts ago, and I marvel again at that Jesus’ promise. Harry had no idea he was a wizard until Hagrid told him he was. His aunt, uncle and cousin were cruel to him from day one, and he was convinced because of their lies that he was just, “Harry.” Oh the reality he was ignorant about. His faith in who he was grew because someone who cared about him told him. I think the same thing happens in reality. What you believe about God and yourself is so important.
He believed the lies until he was told otherwise. Never accept information until you’ve weighed it in your own mind, talked about it with wiser people, read about it, prayed about it, and then you can make a decision based upon the brilliant mind God gave you. Will you be wrong? We’re human so of course we’ll be wrong. Will we be right? We’re children of God, and nothing can stop the love of a parent. You can stop me with a bullet, but good luck trying to put a bullet in God’s “head.” Nothing will thwart the love God has for His creation. That’s a stronger foundation for yes we’ll be right. Times are bad. I get it. I fight depression for God’s sake. Many of you reading this have a mental illness that is debilitating, and sometimes all we can do is put one foot in front of the other. Like Harry we weren’t prepared for what life threw at us, but we are rising to the occasions to be who God is calling us to be. Fear, inadequacy, illness and anxiety are par for the course, and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have bad things happen to them.
I’ve never been promised that life is fair. Satan made sure of that. Voldemort made sure of that for Harry and his family. Evil has existed since Satan, a former angel, rejected God and the other angels. He was successful in building an army of bad angels, hence the reason we have wars and rumors of war today. I completely blame 9/11, school shootings, and any other mass shooting on Satan. Do not underestimate the power he has for destruction.
Trust is constantly betrayed in this world, but when we strive to earn it back I think God goes to bat for us in ways we do not see. Redemption is a religious word we don’t use everyday, but I think we’ll have a better concept of it when we join Him after Judgement Day. Forgiveness is without a doubt involved in redemption, so anything we can read, listen to and put into practice focused on forgiveness is time well spent. We smile at the Disney movie Frozen, but the song Let It Go is so important for our culture. We’ve been hurt deeply. 9/11 was unprecedented, and even though many countries have experienced that their entire existence we were caught off guard by an evil that delighted Satan. So long we stay silent about things that matter Satan is empowered to continue his destruction in our families. Societies’ strength comes from our families, and we need to sell out to the way God is bringing healing to our families. Every act of love, kindness and gentleness we give to those under our own roofs is not wasted. I would argue that it delights the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and Jesus delights as well because we are aware of the power of the Holy Spirit He sent on Pentecost for those who believe.
Faith is vital in this whole process. Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see, and what we do not see is more real than the things we see. Let’s stop assigning value to big portfolios, houses, fine cars, physical attraction and sex. Let’s stop rewarding athletic prowess, and praise activity like Mother Theresa did when she was on this earth. Let’s die to ourselves, live for each other and love when we don’t feel like it.
This God we serve is not a genie who gives us three wishes. He hasn’t given us a wand from Ollivander’s shop to conquer evil. He’s given us Jesus and the Holy Spirit who indwells us even more than the blood in our veins.
It’s time to start acting like it.