I was driving down the road last week with my girlfriend's son, Jake (yes, the same Jake from last year's Chick-fil-A post), and my youngest son, whom Jake adorably refers to as "Froster." His name is actually Foster, but Jakey's so dang cute that I can't bring myself to correct him. Also, Foster is known for having a sour attitude and a generally unhappy disposition these days, so "Froster" might not be all that far off base. He tends to give a lot of icy glares and cold shoulders. Basically, what I'm trying to say is that the only reason he's still with us is because he's totes adorbs.
Anyway, we were driving down the road and Jake started playing a game with Froster - I mean Foster.
"Froster, if God had a race with a rocket, do you know who would win? GOD! Because God always wins!"
"Froster, if God was in a battle with Hulk Smash, do you know who would win? GOD! Because God always wins!"
"Froster, if God and Santa Claus had a race to hand out Christmas presents to the whole world, do you know who'd win? (I'll admit, I got nervous on this one) GOD! Because God always wins!"
And so on and so forth. Froster thought this was a great game, and they played for at least ten minutes, even though they knew what the answer would be to every question. They giggled and screamed and both shouted over and over, "GOD ALWAYS WINS!"
I sat on my bed last night watching the breaking news coverage of the terror attacks in Paris (yes, we have a TV in our bedroom - don't judge; we find that watching Dateline together at night really gets us in the mood...), and the conversation between Jake and Foster came back to my mind.
"Jordan, if God is in a battle against the most ruthless, evil, terroristic enemy imaginable, an enemy who's constantly prowling the earth to steal, kill, and destroy, do you know who'd win?"
I have to admit, for a moment I forgot the answer.
I watched the news coverage and saw the pictures of the unthinkable carnage and heard the accounts of first-hand witnesses who survived only by hiding themselves beneath the dead, and I felt sure that the enemy had won.
I thought of the mothers and fathers who would be receiving calls that their children would never grace the doorways of their homes again, and of the children who would grow up alone simply because mom and dad went out for a date night to their favorite restaurant, and I felt defeated. Like we had all been defeated.
I worried that the same people who planned coordinated attacks across the beautiful city of Paris would bring their AK-47s to my homeland, to my city, and that none of us would ever be at peace again.
Jakey, Ms. Jordan forgot.
But not for long.
In the middle of my heartbreak and my horror and my fear, I heard Froster's and Jakey's voices loud and clear in the backseat of my van, giggling with glee and shouting in triumph:
"GOD ALWAYS WINS!"
I needed to be reminded of this amazing truth from Revelation 21:
"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, 'Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.'"
Again, the question: if God is in a battle against the most ruthless, evil, terroristic enemy imaginable, an enemy who's constantly prowling the earth to steal, kill, and destroy, do you know who'd win?
In that moment, I remembered that I already know the end of the story, and (spoiler alert!), God will, in fact, win. He always does, and He always will. The story just isn't over yet.