African American poet Langston Hughes asks a question in one of his poems, “What happens to a dream deferred?…Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?…Or does it explode?”
Dreams long squelched by injustice may well explode in anger and rage, but I suspect that, for most of us, the far greater danger is of our dreams drying up like raisins in the sun. Is there any greater tragedy than those whose lives have become little more than mere existence, their dreams long since petrified and forgotten?
John the Baptist was one who would not allow his dream to be shattered. It was a dream of a coming Messiah, the One who would set life aright, the One who would open the way to abundant joy and peace and hope and life.
And to keep that dream alive, the Baptist shouted a message of repentance. Biblical repentance is not simply a matter of remorse for past sins and shortcomings; much more, it is a turning around, the taking on of a new set of values, a new perspective towards life, a new way of living.
Even more, repentance is a matter of embracing a whole new identity as the people of God, recognizing that something radically new is unfolding and that you and I have significant roles to play as participants in the story.
Thanks to Joel D. Kline for these thoughts.
Are YOU keeping YOUR dreams alive? After the pandemic and being sequestered, do YOU have a better perspective on life, with a new way of living?
YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD IS THE BEST RELATIONSHIP YOU WILL EVER HAVE!!