Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Last Stroke of Twelve.

Scenario: A great enemy has captured the hero's beloved. The beloved is bound in chains, and is most likely being lowered slowly into a pit of lava or a lake infested with ravenous crocodiles. The enemy is delivering a speech declaring that the hero is dead, or soon will be. In this moment of what should logically be utter despair, the beloved instead looks resolutely at the enemy and says, "My hero will come for me." The enemy laughs and continues to lower the beloved towards certain death. Then! At the last possible moment, in the final seconds of the final hour, the hero arrives, rescuing the beloved and defeating the enemy (as epic music plays triumphantly in the background, of course). And the beloved gazes into the eyes of the hero and whispers, "I knew you would come for me."

Sound familiar? So many films have used some version of this plot line, we can walk into a movie theater and within ten minutes, predict the story's outcome. It has become so common, in fact, that we rarely stop to consider what a truly remarkable scenario it is.

Seriously. How can the beloved have that much faith that her hero will come to her rescue? A split second away from death. Every visible circumstance contrary to the belief in a happy ending. Yet the beloved still has complete confidence in the hero. Complete assurance of the story's end. We accept it because it's "just a movie," but if you were actually in that scenario--if you could feel the heat from the lava scorching your toes, or the crocodiles' sharp teeth grazing your ankles--who would you bet on? The enemy, who has you in his clutches? Or the hero, who once gave you a promise of love, but is now nowhere to be found?

This scenario is something we all experience, you know. Probably not literally. But spiritually speaking, it happens all the time. For our God has a great Enemy. And just like in the movies, the Enemy is well aware that the quickest way to break the heart of the Hero is to capture the Beloved--to capture us. He is always seeking to devour. And we are all too-easily lured into traps and tricked by lies.

The question is: When the Enemy has us at the end of our rope, inches away from death, with no escape in sight, do we have the faith to say, "My Hero will come for me"? Because the Hero is coming, beloved. He is already on His way. The hour is late, but not too late. The ending has already been written: He will reach you just in time.

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