Antonym of Sorrow


In the midst of devastation, people are able to find hope—this is my life’s greatest challenge.

Living in West Africa in the second poorest country in the world for two summers, I observed the most beautiful smiles I had ever seen in the middle of devastating poverty. This joy felt impossible to wrap my head around.

Then I lived in the Middle East for two years, hearing stories of God’s Kingdom expanding throughout the lands. I saw a woman throw her head back in laughter—true joy—in the middle of her homeland being destroyed, when only hours before she recounted story after story to me about how her relatives were brutally murdered in the streets. 

How can this be?

The gospel is powerful. It’s not a story we get to share or we have to share. God has flipped our world’s story of brokenness on its head. When we think all is lost; it’s not.

I learned how life changing the gospel can be. I learned it through the way a woman in desperate poverty can lift a song of joy to God or the way a Syrian refugee can find joy and peace in the midst of war ravaging her country. That’s when I learned why the gospel must be shared. It’s a hope that can transform mourning into dancing, that takes weeping and turns it into joy.

Jesus is the hope in the darkest nights, and how can we hide this light, this hope, and this peace from a hurting world around us? The gospel is alive and moving with glorious waves around this world—trading people’s sorrows for joy.

Abi Khavari traveled the world, writing for a non-profit agency in the Middle East. She now lives in Colorado, got married recently, and is starting her Masters of Counseling this spring.

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