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Some of the responses to the question we posed in June and July showed that some people have given up hope. Some despair at the state of the world. Others despair at the way the world immediately around them is. Some despair about themselves or their families. The difference between worry and despair is that, with worry, there is still a glimmer of hope. With despair the light of hope has gone out completely and there is nothing left but depression. Negative emotions were the biggest category in the survey and these could be split in to two – anxiety and depression. We attempted to give some answers to the problem of anxiety last week. This week we ask whether there is any hope for those whose despair leads them into depression.
The good news of the gospel is that there is hope. That hope is centred in God and, in particular in Jesus Christ.
When Jesus died on the cross his disciples, the mother of Jesus and the other members of the group that followed Jesus were all plunged in to despair. The light of hope went out from their lives.
But that was Friday. On Sunday the stone was rolled away. Jesus had the victory of death, over hate, over the forces of darkness, over sin and over the world.
These are the words of Jesus to you and me, and especially to those who are in despair without hope: "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world". (John 6:33)