I look out across the land, once lush, green, and fruitful is now harsh, condemning, and dry. The brittle earth, cracked and burnt, devoured all growth and consumed any existing beauty. Now brutal, arid, hot—the land is void of Life and Hope. The Despair living here is not heavy and smothering, but draining and dehydrating. It is brown and black, crunchy and cracked, brittle and broken, dry and dead, singed and scorched. It has been struck by Death, obliterating the life that flowed out of it. He ravaged the land, stealing the Hope and Joy that maintained Life. In his wake remains naked earth, dry river beds, brittle plants, singed grass, and broken dreams.
Yet a sprout remains: a drop of water, a twinge of green in the char and chaff. From this sprout emerges Hope. Small at first, it offers strength and courage. Quickly it builds into a rushing torrent inciting Joy, Bravery, and security. In time Hope allows the land to heal over—the broken and brittle plants decompose, the old dreams dissipate, the river beds grow into a trickle, the bare earth becomes covered by the decomposing carbon left by Death. He came to conquer, but his victory is short-lived. The unanticipated restoration breathes Life and Light onto the scorched earth.
“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” ~2 Chronicles 7:14