Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A Prisoner of Hope

So I have been thinking a lot about what my next post was going to be.  There is a lot that is going around in my brain right now.  I have about 5 or 6 topics I think would be good to write about, but none seem to be the correct thing to write about at the moment.  I also almost decided to give up writing altogether.  I have gotten some not so positive feedback from those around me.  And it is not my intention to directly upset people.  But I do think there is a difference of making people upset and making people think and/or be convicted.  And as I have stated before, I truly feel God has called me to write, if simply to help one person understand that they are not alone in difficult times. 

So, here I am.  Writing.  And I also do not believe that my writing will always be from the perspective of struggle and working through pain.  That is just where I am now.  And as everything in life, we go through different seasons, and I do not believe we grow into better and stronger people if we try to ignore and forget the difficult times.  Quite the contrary.  So.  I write to remember and will look back and see what incredible trials my Jesus brought me through.  And very likely see His hand in a way I do not see while I am in it.  Does any of that make sense?  Hopefully, it does.  Anyway, on to what I am here to say. 

Through all of the struggles that have happened in my life of late I have come to realize there are really only 2 options to how to look at things.  Hope and giving up.  And it may surprise you which one is more difficult.  At least for me.  Hope is a wonderful thing.  Truly.  But it is not all sunshine and roses.  Actually, I have found that it can hurt like..... well.  You know.  I posted it the other day, but I heard a quote while watching a great show called Call the Midwife- "Hope has extraordinary power. It feeds the soul... and yet can torment it. It can be dashed, but it can show the way."  I could not have put it better myself.  But even though it is rough sometimes, the only option for me is to hope.    

I sometimes have felt like a fool holding on to hope that God will rescue me from this pain.  I think that is part of our battle with flesh.  My logic says that it has been this long and God has not answered my prayers, so likely it is just not going to happen.  But logic does not always go with God's plan.  So I have those days where I feel like I am Charlie Brown with the football.  I think there is a glimmer of light coming down the path, only to get knocked down and fall a few more paces back.  So I ask myself if  it is even worth hoping that my miracle is coming??  Here is my answer.  Yes.  Yes, it is.  I had to think it through.  I had to ask myself "Do I really believe that God loves me?  Do I really believe He answers and hears His children's prayers?  Do I realize His timing is not mine?" Absolutely.  I do.  I sometimes act or feel like that is not true.  But deep in my heart, and even in my brain I believe that.  But sometimes, to be frank, it sucks.

I admit.  There have been several very volatile moments when I considered the other option.  Giving up.  Not the "giving up everything to God" sentiment.  No.  Giving up as in walking away from this Christian life, on God.  Believing Him.  Yup.  Sure did.  But then I looked around, thought about my life without Jesus, and knew that would be a much more tragic and devastating outcome.  I do believe God, I just get impatient.  We all do.  If you say you never do, well, liar liar, panties ablaze (in my humble opinion).

Anyway, all that to say.  I am choosing to hope.  And I encourage any one else who may find themselves in a moment of doubt to remember the God we love and serve.  He is good.  Even, and especially when we do not understand what He is planning.  We have an entire Book that shows us that.  And it can be one of the most difficult things to do, but you just have to trust.  And not give up hope.  Even when He is quiet and not answering.  I know in the end, it will all make sense, and be better than I could have imagined.  Simply because He promised us He would take care of us.

Now, a little extra thought.  This does not mean I am going around hating life because nothing has happened yet.  I do not.  Yes.  I am going through one of the most difficult times in life.  And I am trying to be thankful for it.  For the growth I am experiencing.  I believe there is a reason that everything around me seems to be in a rubbled heap.  But that does not mean I can put on a happy face all the time.  It is just not who I am.  It is funny that I am a Kindergarten teacher, because I am definitely not the stereo-type many have about us.  I do not walk around with a sing-songy voice, humming the Wiggles, and refusing to acknowledge the harshness life can bring.  We aren't like that.  Especially me.  I am real.  Anyone that knows me can tell you I do not hide my feelings or opinions very well.  I am not just an open book, I am a full-length feature film constantly displaying what is going on.  Though I have tried to get better at hiding my feelings.  Who knows how successful I am. 

Anyway, that is why I write.  To share what God is doing in my life.  To let people know, we are going to go through hard times.  And it is going to be more difficult than you could ever imagine.  It has been for me.  But I do see a light.  Definitely.  I choose to hope.  Why?  Because I know God and know He will take care of me.  Simple as that.