These last few weeks have been tough, and because of that, my HOPE has really struggled to stay on its feet.
(It isn’t easy stuff we’re going to discuss today.)
So, now that you’ve been given fair warning, let’s talk about: When it feels like the end of hope.
Where do you turn, or what do you do next, when you come to “The End” of all that is within your power to say, or do, to improve, resolve, or solve a situation for the better.
Is there HOPE, even there?
Yes, yes, yes, and a thousand times I say, “Yes!“
Coming to the end of your rope
It happens doesn’t it?
Sometimes we just come to the very end of our words, our ideas, maybe even our prayers, while a situation in our lives just keeps on deteriorating.
“Now what?” we might ask.
Do you feel like I do? That you’ve prayed it all, and still, you see no way through your dilemma?
(Well, you’re not alone. I am right there beside you!)
But you know what? Even though we have come to the end of ourselves, it doesn’t mean we have come to the end of our HOPE. Jesus had to remind me again, just this morning, though I see no way?
He… is THE WAY.
“Baptize my heart in Your love”
This has become my new prayer for my own dilemma.
Though it feels like there is nothing in my situation that is in my control? God has lovingly reminded me, again…
He is the One in control of everything.
And, He has gently encouraged me (through Brian Simmons, The Divine Romance, and Anne Graham Lotz’s book, Wounded By God’s People, that I am not to give in to the lies of hopelessness!
On the contrary, I am to keep my words and deeds hopeful, loving, and kind, or I am to keep silent, and simply wait on Him.
(My flesh doesn’t want to do this, of course!)
And so, I prayed in desperation, “Jesus, baptize my heart in Your love.”
Then, I go to His Word, and… He does just that!
A heart made clean
As we again gather around our teacups, Emilie pours as she shares her thoughts with us…
… we need to keep our hearts clean … because a clean heart is a hopeful heart. It’s very hard for us to keep moving forward into the possibilities of the future when we’re covered with the grime of past sins–our own or others.
(I see I’m not the only one here who is nodding in wistful agreement.)
Forgiving always begins with me
I learned some time ago, that the longer I wait to forgive anyone, the harder it is.
I also have learned that, sometimes, you just can’t find the right answer to fix all that is broken.
I am reminded of a quote by Golda Meir when she was asked, why she could not seem to make peace with the Palestinians.
Golda responded to her interviewer,
How do I reconcile with someone who has dedicated themselves to my destruction?
She makes a good point. Forgiveness is my choice. Reconciliation, on the other hand, involves another’s choices, as well as mine.
Coming to the end of ourselves is a great beginning
So let me ask, “Do you also have someone in your life who has dedicated themselves to your destruction?”
(It’s very painful, isn’t it?)
But, though you or I may not have the solutions, or resolution to another’s harsh words, or harsh choices, or abusive behavior–we do have the freedom to choose to forgive, to maintain our hope, and to move forward.
Those choices are totally in our control, and so, that is where we begin.
Then we pray, surrendering all that is broken to our God, who alone can accomplish the impossible for us.
That may, or may not be, a reconciliation.
Our choices involve our own heart–but surrender means– we acknowledge that God grants each heart their own choice.
God promises us: when we can’t–He CAN!
- I stand silently to listen for the one I love, waiting as long as it takes for the Lord to rescue me. For God alone has become my Savior. He alone is my safe place; his wrap-around presence always protects me. For he is my champion defender; there’s no risk of failure with God. So why would I let worry paralyze me, even when troubles multiply around me? Psalm 62: 1-2 TPT
- The Lord is my revelation-light to guide me along the way; he’s the source of my salvation to defend me every day. I fear no one! I’ll never turn back and run from you, Lord; surround and protect me. Psalm 27: 1 TPT
- Create in me a new, clean heart, O God, filled with clean thoughts and right desires. Psalm 51: 10 TLB
- Show me the path where I should go, O Lord; point out the right road for me to walk. Psalm 25: 4 TLB
Our fourth cup
Let’s take a cup of hope this week to someone who may be walking through something that seems hopeless and downright impossible.
Let’s offer to listen, reminding them that they are not alone–someone cares.
We may not know every answer to their situation but we know the One who does.
Perhaps it will help, just to remind them that there is One who loves them and will bring them the answers they need, when the time is right.
I know how hard it is when all seems dark and hopeless.
Help us to totally rely on You, and Your word, to show us the way through our dark dilemmas.
Baptize our hearts in Your love once again, and keep on doing it, until the dry bones come back to life.
Jesus, we need Your answers. Let us not lean on our own understanding, but always remember, You will see us through whatever we are facing, and we will again, have plenty of opportunity to praise You.
You are our HOPE–the One who will make a way for us now, today. We surrender our broken things to You.
In Your Holy name I ask, let us realize Your peace, until Your answers come, amen.
* Emilie’s “gems” are shared with the permission of Harvest House Publishers. They are: Taken from: A CUP OF HOPE by Emilie Barnes, Copyright © 2000, Published by Harvest House Publishers
Photos courtesy of: Unsplash
This weeks photo credits and “My Thanks!” go to photographers: Kristopher Roller, Jon Tyson, Greg Willson, Nicholas Moscarda, Michelle McEwan, Daniel Tafjord, and Morgan Sessions.