The cinema audience at Les Miserables was absorbed in the story. A life journey was unfolding before us; great themes of grace, sin, liberation and destiny were explored, touching each one there. You couldn’t help but identify with the characters emotionally and think ‘how would I be in such circumstances’?
It is the character of a person which is revealed in most testing times and not in easy days. For the Christian we might hope that something of God might be shown through us in times of trial. I want to ask myself ahead of great testing how deeply grace has touched my life. If I have been forgiven and my life claimed for God, like the character Valdez Jean, then am I able to see and seek God in the people and circumstances around me? Has God’s love gone deeply in my life so that I reflect His grace and inherent character?
This issue is important when thinking about the future and end times. The forerunner message is a sharply prophetic one, preparing the way of The Lord. Some would imagine the caricature of a doom and gloom billboard preacher on the street corner. Like a John the Baptist, forerunners call people to get their lives right with God. They help others understand the global shaking and clashes of light and darkness that will increasingly dominate news. They explain the glory of God which communities will be experiencing in ways that help them embrace His presence.
Yet, if the forerunner message is not lived out of a heart reflecting the grace and love of Jesus, then it will be misunderstood and rejected as a clanging cymbal. You and I offer an invitation to a feast that we ourselves have been banqueting at. We call people to trust in God from a place of rest and confidence in our Lord, for perfect love will have cast out fingers of fear and gutters of guilt in our own lives.
So one of the key foundations in in being used by God in these coming years will be allowing our hearts to be transformed by God’s incredible love. Then we will be truly offering good news and bearing hope for the future. For we will be reflecting the very thing that attracts people to Jesus – His grace.