As Tom makes his final trip back to Land’s End from John o’ Groats there are many moments of courage and kindness. In fact, Tom goes viral as the unlikely #BusHero, as he reaches out to others along the way. But there is also an air of melancholy about this story. Tom’s life is almost over and, as he makes this trip for his late wife, the journey is full of memories. Few movies feature a sense of the afterlife, Gladiator is surprisingly one of these, but it is hard to communicate a sense of faith about things beyond this world on the silver screen.
We live at a time when all kinds of pressures bear down on us, and if this life is all there is then… well… the great Christian hope is that there is more. Death, according to a writer known as Paul, has lost its sting because of Jesus and his life. A rebel who hung dying on a cross beside Jesus saw that and asked for help. ‘Today,’ Jesus promised him, ‘you’ll be with me in paradise.’ In some cultures it’s fashionable to think that this human life is the be-all-and-end-all, but Jesus promises more. He tells story after story relating to a dimension beyond this one, and offered, with open hands, the invitation to discover the meaning of that life, by taking a step and placing our small, mustard-seed faith in him. It seems to me that now is a time when we need that hope and encouragement. The kind of hope that is not about sidestepping this world but engaging with it.
‘I have come to bring you life, a full abundant life,’ said Jesus. (John chapter 10 verse 10)