What are you busy with?

“I figure I have a choice; I can get busy living or get busy dying.”

Image result for shawshank redemptionThis is one of my favorite lines from Shawshank Redemption. Andy, falsely convicted of his wife’s murder, has somehow managed to hang on to hope during 20 years of incarceration. Unexpected information makes a retrial possible, but this opportunity is violently thwarted. Andy goes a little nuts, and spends two months in solitary.

This awful punishment brings about a change in Andy. He tells his friend that he finally realized that he was responsible for his wife’s death—his neglect of her needs drove her into the arms of another man and resulted in her death. You expect him to voice despair, instead he chooses to stick with hope, to get busy living. No more spoilers; you’ll have to watch the movie yourself.

How is this possible?

I don’t know what Andy’s basis for hope is, but I do know what mine is. In the middle of this mud-slinging  presidential campaign, in the middle of horrendous natural disasters, surrounded by mass shootings/bombings, hateful name-calling, finger-pointing, and disclosure of so many immoral choices and action, I still have hope.

How is this possible?

David says is beautifully in Psalm 23. Because our God is on the throne, we have an eternal perspective and hope.

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
    he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord

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