Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Red Umbrella

I’ve always had a thing for red umbrellas1

…a peculiar liking considering my preference of wet over dry…and the fact my favorite colors are on the opposite end of the spectrum.

So naturally…when my home church decided to set up a red umbrella by our welcome desk earlier this summer, my fascination couldn’t help but rekindle.

What a nice touch, I thought2. This will add some flair to our lobby.

But while the red umbrella, no doubt, offered a charming visual, the more I passed it by, the more I realized its unique significance, specifically, it wasn’t just some classy décor there to look cute; it was a landmark drawing people to a place they could connect3 and discover hope4.

Suddenly, I could sense the Spirit broadening my definition of the term.

Yes, hope is a sure and steadfast expectation (Proverbs 23:18), but this doesn't mean it's limited to a feeling about the future, a dollop of quixotic optimism5...or pride in something passionately believed in.

Contrarily, hope is a dwelling place, an open door for faith, a bridge for testimony and community, and a sounding board for confidence.
  • It's being ready to reach out and help others find relationship…
  • It's being willing to share what God gives…
  • …and it's being an agent of peace to those who are trying to find their way.
So putting it all together…hope is not only a sure expectation of what’s to come when God’s confidence kisses ours in the now…but it’s uniting people to the track God has for them.

Or to put it another way, hope is taking the red umbrella everywhere you go (#micdrop)…whether it’s your home, your work, the gym, the shopping center…you name it.

It’s being an extension of God’s redemptive6 love and a torchbearer of truth in our spheres of influence.

Pretty amazing, eh? 

So if you want your life to breathe life, consider (the sweet covering of) the red umbrella as a watermark of the hope you have to offer.

‘Cause in this life, there are many storms…
…why not have red umbrella handy…just in case.

Footnotes

1) After all, I love the rain…as well as the characterization in Pixar’s “Blue Umbrella” short…ironically enough…
2) My mind now a textual explosion of applause emojis
3) Specifically, where new guests could connect with church members after service…and receive a gift bag designed to let them hear about our story
4) A fitting recognition, considering my church’s decision to set it as our new membership ministry logo
5) Shout-out to Dr. Carla Waterman
6) The scriptural significance of the color “red” has much to do with our redemption. Check Isaiah 1:18 and Matthew 26:28

Photo creds: http://www.brownaviationlease.com & https://cmchesebro.files.wordpress.com

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