One of my favorite stories of all time is Les Miserables. If you have never seen the musical, read the book, watched one of the many movie adaptations; I encourage you to dive into this narrative of what grace and love looks like when the world is less than perfect. The above will take you to YouTube where you can listen to the Broadway soundtrack, which leaves out some of the transitional songs ~ many of which are important to understanding story. But, if you have some experience with the various versions of Les Mes, the above will awaken your memory.
If you are unfamiliar with the story line, you may want to watch the PBS version of the musical live on stage by clicking below...warning it is over 2 hours...but will be helpful and in my humble opinion well worth your time.
This story seeks to deal with questions like, what happens when life is unfair? How do we live in the midst of suffering, stress, and strain? Sound familiar?
In the opening we meet Valjean who was arrested for stealing bread and has served 19 years in prison. 5 years because he stole the bread, 14 because he tried to escape. Valjean is the central character who must try to figure out how to live his life in the mist of brokenness and when things don't go your way. Again, sound familiar? In the opening we also meet Javert, the head guard, who will be obsessed with Valjean throughout the musical.
If you click on the second video, I invite you to watch the first 10 minutes, where around minute 6, you meet the Bishop who welcomes Valjean in with the gospel good news of hospitality and forgiveness. I invite you to listen to the music and words a few times through the Bishop's song (ending around 9:20 minute mark of the second video).
Enter the story.
Let it sing to your soul.
And let's begin to find ways to explore the traces of God's grace of Les Mes in these days.