Suddenly, the house came alive! Shouts of joy, people rushing to get themselves ready.
“What are we going to see?”
“Goldfinger! It’s another James Bond film.”
The year was 1964. The place – Nairobi! We were ecstatic. We all piled into the car and set off. It took a little while to get out to the Drive-In Cinema at Thika, but we preferred it to the Bellevue near the airport.
If we as brothers and sisters had been quarrelling or had been irritable with one another, it was quickly forgotten as we set our minds on what was coming. The thing we were looking forward to superseded everything else at that moment. An outing to the Fox Drive-In Cinema at Thika was just about our favourite activity. We were happy, excited and full of anticipation. Our positive demeanour made us good to be around (for the moment!). Shh. Our car was in place facing the massive screen, the speaker was off its pole and hitched to Dad’s window, volume up… “let the film begin”!
We all need to have things we look forward to – perhaps a holiday abroad, a TV programme, a weekly activity. It may surprise you to know that the proper word to describe this is “hope”. We all thrive on hope.
A hope is something we look forward to that hasn’t happened yet. Wishful thinking is not really ‘hope’. It is just wishful thinking. A true hope is one we are certain is going to happen and we are waiting for its fulfilment. Our lives are often filled with little hopes. They keep us going from day to day.
A Jewish writer called Paul, who wrote most of the New Testament, said, “Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. According to His great mercy, He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3)
A lot of hopes seem to be either unfulfilled or short-lived like our Drive-In experience. But here Paul talks to us about a living hope. One that does not die.
At Easter we remember that Christ died in our place so that we could have peace with God. After three days He rose again and will never die again. So He is our living hope. He has given us a tremendous and reliable hope to look forward to – being fulfilled in His presence beyond our greatest dreams.
To know He loves us and that He has good plans for those who put their trust in Him must surely fill us with the greatest of all hopes. (Jer 29:11)