Hope is a poweful thing. It allows us to suffer long and endure when life gets tough. It gives us the strength to inch forward another day when circumstances don’t otherwise look good. Hope fuels our will to do what is necessary and what is right when our current situation doesn’t show any signs of improvement. We have an amazing tenacity for suffering as long as we have just a glimmer of hope and our pain has a purpose. Because of this, we have to be very careful with whom or what we put our hope in. If we put our hope in people, situations, dreams or even our own ability to accomplish things, we set ourselves up for heartache and disappointment because although we can work hard and do our best to make the right choices, we truly have no control over life circumstances, and though some of us may try, we certainly have no control over other people. When things don’t happen the way we had imagined, or when people don’t cooperate with the dream we had envisioned, this is when our heart becomes disillusioned and our hope faulters. Often times this becomes a root of depression which can lead to all kinds of other things including suicide, self-harm overeating and substance abuse because we are mourning a loss of control in our lives and these things put us back in the driver’s seat…so it seems. Until once again, we lose control and are given over to be controlled by our impulses and cravings.
If we put our hope in God, we can trust that He is not caught by surprise by anything we encounter. When we choose to put our lives completely in his hands, he promises to never leave us or forsake us. This does not mean we are guaranteed a smooth, flawless road, but it means we have the comfort and the direction of the only one who not only knows what lies ahead, but has our best interest in mind even though we can’t see the whole picture. God is very intetested in our goals and dreams, but in order for us to be successful, he is interested in making sure we have the chatacter, strength and integrity we will need when we finally reach that goal. This is why it’s so important not only to ask God for direction, but to actually ask him what it is that he has planned for us. It is so much easier to put our hope in God when we are following HIS plan for our lives and not trying to manipulate God into following ours. When God is truly in charge it takes the burden of responsibility off of us to fix what goes disastrously wrong. We can simply surrender it to God and ask him what the next step is in his plan. Often times we will have to step out into the unknown before we will know if we are even heading the right direction. It can feel terrifying and exhilarating all at once but the whole point is that God wants us to follow him, seek after him and hope in him for every step. It is our nature to want to know a secure plan up front, five moves ahead so we can feel secure and in control. God doesn’t work that way. If you read about how he led his people through the wilderness to get to the promised land he was teaching them to trust him, obey him and honor him. Your hope process can be as painful or as fulfilling as you choose for it to be. Lean in and put your hope in God. Make him your everything. Just try to remember that your goals are not a final destination. They are just tiny stops on a long journey so learn to enjoy the journey!
“This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary” Hebrews 6:19