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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

20 April 2011: Tom Cooper, St Mary's Buriton

Hope in Hard Times

The world seems particularly troubled at the moment. Every day we see images of Afghanistan, Libya, Ivory Coast, Japan; there are so many other places which fall out of the news before a week has passed, though we know the suffering does not end - Pakistan, Sudan, New Zealand.

We can easily think: 'Where is God in all this? Why doesn't He do something?' This was precisely the question put to Jesus in the wilderness - the forty days and nights that we commemorate during Lent: 'Why don't you feed the hungry? Why don't you turn these stones into bread?'

And God did do something. But what He did was very different from what we might have liked, and certainly something that we find a lot harder to understand: He died for us on the cross. If the story had ended there we would never have heard of Jesus except as a good man who became yet another victim of tyranny long ago.

But the story didn't end there - God brought life into the world again with the Resurrection, and at Pentecost when the Spirit came among us - the Spirit which is still with us, and which can give us hope and help us to help each other in our need: all we have to do is to open our hearts.

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