Happily Ever After
by Jacob Hess
Life isn’t always easy.
In-fact, it seems more often than not life is pretty hard. There is real struggle, pain, and suffering in this life. Yet, in the midst of all that sucks I believe that there is hope. Some may think differently, but I believe the stories that hold the most “true to life” kind of truth are the ones with happening endings. When the prince saves the princess, when the beauty transforms the beast, and when all is made right; when there is a wedding and a happily ever after.
Don’t think I’m some storybook optimist with his head in the clouds.
Actually, those who know me would probably say the opposite. I just got married myself (almost 2 years ago now). It was such a beautiful day filled with much happiness, but I know there are many hardships ahead of me as my marriage unfolds. How could there not be when two sinful people enter into a commitment with one another? I see the world as it is, filled with brokenness and sorrow. Even so, while brokenness may be our current situation, I know the ending, and this isn’t it. Like J.R.R. Tolkien says, all those happy ending stories really point to the True Story, the “underlying Reality” that we connect with when we hear those stories for they all point to the Gospel. Timothy Keller, in his book Kings Cross writes, “The Gospel is the ultimate story that shows victory coming out of defeat, strength coming out of weakness, life coming out of death, rescue from abandonment. And because it is a true story, it gives us hope because we know life is really like that.” My wedding was a day filled with much happiness, but the beauty I saw that day was not only in the shining eyes of my bride; no, I knew that just like all the best stories my wedding day was pointing beyond itself to the greatest story ever told: The Story of the Gospel.
What is the Gospel?
It is the most amazing thing ever done and that ever will be done! It is the True Story we are all called into. It is the fulfillment of all longing and the destruction of all fear. The Gospel is “God with us”. The Gospel is Jesus: the One and only Son of God who came into the world to be with us, died for us, and on the third day rise from the dead, defeating death, sin, darkness, and everything that ever stood between us and Him. Now through faith in Jesus we have life in the midst of death. We have light in the midst of darkness. We have happy endings in the midst of lives of suffering for all is done and all is won. While life may hurt now, through Jesus even our worst hurts will be turned into great joy on the Day that He comes to bring us Home, when all things are made new and we celebrate the great wedding feast of Christ and us His Church. As Keller writes, “You will find that the worst things that have ever happened to you will in the end only enhance your eternal delight.” As a follower of Christ I have hope because not only did He give everything to save me, and not only is He with me now in my suffering, but I know that the end won’t actually be the end.
Not a Fairytale
There is a Prince coming to my rescue. There is a Beauty who will transform me into my true self with her love. All will be made right and new. There will be a wedding and a happily ever after. I will spend all eternity with God my Savior, Comforter, and Father in perfect joy and relationship where there will be no tears, no fears, and no pain.
Jacob Hess is the Music and Media Minister of The Hallows Church, husband to Alexa and author of the book “The Bright Abyss.” (I, George San Miguel, added the link to his book. Everyone should check it out!)
 Timothy Keller, Kings Cross, 228.
 Timothy Keller, Kings Cross, 228.
 Timothy Keller, Kings Cross, 230.
 Timothy Keller, Kings Cross, 224.