Out of Desperation | Sojourners

Out of Desperation

It’s not that we’re whiny. We’re cynical and isolated.

I, for one, had a hard time trusting anything: Love is forever (my parents divorced when I was 4). Uncle Sam is your friend (if you’re American, and sometimes not even then). Technology will solve the world’s problems (just turn off the TV, dear, and take your Prozac). And Richard Nixon is not a crook.

I had no mentors in the faith. There are no Christians within climbing distance on my family tree. When I came to God, I came out of desperation.

Growing up in Austin, Texas, I heard the gospel from Young Life, a youth ministry. That gave me context for the first song about Christ that I understood, by the Who: "I’d pay any price just to win you. I’d give up my good life for bad. I’d do anything just to have you. I’d stand naked, stoned, and stabbed and call that a bargain. The best I ever had."

That Jesus could see his death on the cross as a win-win gave me hope that there is a worth in the dry and weary place of the human soul.

Every one of us is broken; the Christ came to heal. I’ve read about how Jesus has redeemed countries, seen him change people around me, and know how he’s healed my life.

As imperfect as it is, the church offers hope when schools, communities, business, and government seem to shout out a resounding "Screw you." Believers stepping out in hope could speak volumes to my generation. n

PIPER LOWELL, 27, is an editor at the National Journalism Center in Washington, D.C. Her influences include The Chronicles of Narnia, by C.S. Lewis.

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Sojourners Magazine November 1994
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