I. Was. Running.

I hate running.

I know that it’s good for you. I’ve read all of the articles and websites and blog posts about the benefits. I know it relieves stress and changes mood but I hate it. Or I should say I have hated it. I have gone through bouts of running. And by that I mean I have tried to make myself a runner a million times over because I feel like I should be a runner. I know I will only reap benefits from it.

There was the time I entered an 8k with little to no training and pretty much from the start my body was like, “nope! Not gonna do it!” And my shoes literally busted about halfway through and I lost a couple of toenails. And it was only an 8k and I literally walked more than the majority of it!

A couple of years later I tried again but on a treadmill this time and I did pretty well for a few months but then I got bored or busy and I just stopped. I always had to push myself to go I never wanted to I just knew that I should.

The last month or two have been a little hard with transitions and uncertainty and just an overall discontentment. I have shared how I have struggled and wrestled and cried and prayed and thanked the Lord through it. Something has changed in the last few weeks.

What has not changed is my position in life, I didn’t really expect it to.

What did change was discipline.

Through a friend I was encouraged to start to run again.

The first day I didn’t want to but knew I had to. Yes, had to. Something in me was saying I just needed to do it. Maybe that’s over dramatic and maybe in a couple of months I’ll give it up again but for now I know it is something I need to do.

The first week was hard. My body ached. My back and my calves were in pain almost the whole time. Everything was so tight and I would get to the end of my street (and I have a short street) and I would start to talk myself out of this. I was in too much pain and this was just going to make it worse, in fact I am just going to injure myself. But something kept me going. When I get to that point I just start talking to the Lord. In those times I started to thank the Lord that I have a body and legs that can carry me and move me in this way. I change my perspective offer myself some grace and I keep going.

By week two the pains went away and I started to increase my actual run time. Now let me be clear, I am barley a runner in fact at this point I am more of a walker with running intervals. But with each day my body gets stronger and my mind is clearer and I can endure longer periods of running. It’s not perfect and it’s not long but it’s enough to stretch myself and push me forward. The benefits for sure outweigh everything else. I am to the point that I look forward to my run at the end of the day and I am actually bummed when I have plans that don’t allow me to run. Yeah, I’m that person right now. And believe me I am more shocked than anybody else.

The Lord has me right here and I believe it is Him who has prompted me to start running and has put the desire in my heart because this discipline is such a great lesson.

When my mind wanders into the negative during my outings I am learning to redirect them and bring them back to a heart of praise for the body that the Lord has given me. When my calves start to cramp up and I am gimping more than running I remember that I can work through it and as I continue on this journey my body will grow stronger and I will get used to this and be able to work through it more effectively.

This is life. We start new and it hurts. We transition into new seasons and our muscles want to rebel and shut down. We have a choice. We can shift our perspective and thank the Lord for a life that is not boring and a life full of mystery and change and beautiful struggles or we can get to the end of the first street and convince ourselves to go home. To give in and to not fight through it. We can say we just don’t want to anymore. We can’t pray about it anymore. We can’t deal and really we just wont. Or we can fight the pain. We can work through the struggle and turn on some worship and thank the Lord that He is near and He is constantly working in and through us and through the change and transition He is making us stronger and more able. And we can know that just as muscle memory kicks in and our breathing pattern steadies and we can run longer than we ever thought possible, that He will throw in a sharp left turn and take us down terrain that we have never experienced before and we can start it all over again. We will struggle as we should. We will hurt and we will be changed but I think that’s the point.

Running is teaching me more and more about discipline. I can stay home and not run because that would be an instant gratification to my flesh. To be lazy and to just sit and take myself, literally, out of the running. Or I can remind myself that as soon as it’s over I am going to feel great. That I will sleep so well that night. That the next day will be easier as I run. That I will be in a better mood and be able to get out the toxins from my body. I am learning to discipline myself to not look at instant gratification but to look at the discipline that will lead to long term benefits. So as I continue to navigate a life that does not look like what I have always dreamed I can shift my perspective to know that God is working through it and He has me here for a reason and He is molding me and shaping me through it. Through the stiffness and pain He is making me stronger as long as I lean into Him.

As I was out the other day I was done with my warmup and it was time to start to run and my feet were heavy and my body stiff and my thoughts were totally negative and this started pumping through my headphones:

“I will trust here in the mystery,

I will trust in you completely,

Awake my soul to sing with your breath in me

I will worship.

You taught my feet to dance upon disappointment and I ,

I will worship,

let the weary rise,

lift their eyes to see,

your love crushing every lie,

every doubt and fear,

So I will,

trust here in the mystery,

I will trust in you completely

Awake my soul to sing with your breath in me I will worship,

you taught my feet to dance upon disappointment and I,

I will worship.

Hallelujah, hallelujah you are making all things new

Hallelujah, hallelujah you are making all things new

Hallelujah, hallelujah you are making all things new

Hallelujah, hallelujah you are making all things new

Awake my soul to sing with your breath in me I will worship

You taught my feet to dance upon disappointment and I,

I will worship.”
 Heroes, Amanda Cook

And I was running.

I want to run the race well. I want to dance upon disappointment and I want to worship and trust the Lord through the mystery.

“So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.” – 1 Corinthians 9:26&27

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Forgetting thankfulness

I have sat down so many times in the last two weeks to write a blog post. I have so many drafts sitting in Word, half done. I have voice messages on my phone that are hoping to turn into some kind of curated work. The thing is, every time I sat down to actually write, it all came out a jumble. Like some kind of rubble I was trying to sift through. Like I was looking for the missing item to help my words make sense. No matter how hard I’ve tried I haven’t been able to find the right pieces to fit everything together. 

I started this blog up again to be vulnerable.

To be a place where we can connect.

Maybe you know where I am? maybe you’re here too or have been here or are approaching this same spot. Wherever that is. What I really don’t want is for this to be some place where I try to eloquently spin what the Lord has really been doing to save face or to try to make things more presentable. The truth is, when we get down to it the question is, are our lives ever really presentable? If we really dig in and really mine for what is going on inside we are not “presentable” humans. We are rough around the edges and crusty (yeah I said it), we are flawed and self absorbent. No matter who we are or what title we may or may not hold we are a mess inside and that is why we need a Savior. That is why God sent His only Son to come to earth to be fully human and be tempted as we are. That is why the same Son had to allow Himself to be murdered on the cross. That is why Jesus, as He hung on the cross said “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” As His murderers cast lots for His clothes and hung Him up between two criminals. “They know not what they do” as we, today, know not what we do. Because of that death on the cross. That oh so costly and painful death on the cross has made us a free people. A people free from death and covered by grace. So much so sometimes that I think we forget how much of a mess we are and how much we need that cross. How much we still don’t know what we do. I want this to be a place where we can connect in being humans that are not presentable. To be the humans that we are that need a savior and that don’t have it all together. All of that to say that after two weeks of sorting through a jumble of words I was prompted to simply share. So here I am, standing in front of the classroom with my toy to share for show and tell hoping that you can connect in some way or at very least not laugh at my measly offering:

The last few weeks have been, well, for lack of a better word, interesting. I am in this weird stage in life and I’m trying to navigate through it. I have been praying and questioning and on my knees and crying out trying to somehow get somewhere. I don’t know where but that’s what it feels like. Climbing and striving for something and I don’t even really know what it is. All I know is I’m trying to get somewhere that is not where I am currently. I go from lamenting and despairing to the Lord to then asking for forgiveness for acting like a petulant child crying over blessings that He has given me as I sit in a home He provided at a job that He gave me. It’s been a push and pull and when I say that I mean it’s been me pushing and pulling and trying to wiggle my way out of something.

The week got better and Friday came and I couldn’t wait to log off of work and step outside and have some freedom for the weekend. Last night as I got in my car to go home after being out with a friend the lines of the song that came on the radio were “ Oh these hands are tired, Oh this heart is tired, Oh this soul is tired. I’ll keep on, I’ll keep on.” The song went on and I sat there letting the words wash over my soul. These words were what I felt like on the inside, tired. I drove home talking to the Lord (which is not unusual) about the week and my desires and asking why and what and how and asking for forgiveness for even asking for anything and then I got home and walked into my kitchen, still talking to the Lord and I stopped. I stopped and as if there was nothing more to be said I said thank you. That was it. I thanked the Lord out loud in my kitchen, multiple times. As I said those words and nothing else I felt lighter inside. These were the words I had somehow forgotten these last few weeks. I had run through every other prayer. But I had forgotten to just thank Him. To just be thankful. Thankful for the struggle of life that keeps me turning to Him. For the place that He has me in. For my job and for my home and for my friends and family. And my goodness I do not thank Him enough for my salvation. For sending His Son to die on the cross for me because I am a sinner and could never get to heaven on my own.  

Saying the words were somehow freeing. I wasn’t asking for anything, forgiveness or otherwise, or fighting through anything I was just saying thank you. Thank you to a God who is so deserving and so deserving of so much more than just a thank you. So as I thanked Him with my words I will continue to try to thank Him with my life, with my actions, with my attitude. I will continue to be right here where He has me and serve Him here, whatever that looks like. So as the week starts again on Monday morning and as the pressure and stress and discontent rears it’s ugly head again (as I’m sure it will) I will be thankful and I will keep on.

So the moral of the story and from one sinner to another, when things are hard or when things are easy and even when you don’t feel like it, just say thank you.  

The Struggle

Sometimes it takes a late night conversation to make you realize that you’ve lost faith in hope.

The other night as I talked to a friend we struggled with the same idea of some of our desires never being fulfilled, never being met. I realized, as I spoke to my friend and she shared her heartache with me that I’ve lost faith that God can still do these things in my own life.

 I lost faith that He is still on the throne, I’ve lost faith that He is still sovereign and I’ve lost faith that I can still hope in these things as long as my hope is placed firmly in Him and as long as I’m walking in His will. We ask for these things (whatever your “thing” may be) and somewhere along the way I stopped asking. I stopped thinking that I should even think that I might be able to have some of these things. I started to believe that I have to sit quietly and not even ask because it was too much to ask for.

I started to believe that I just had to stay right here, where I am and never be moved and to just suck it up so to speak. The idea of that, as I’m sure you can surmise or maybe have experienced, is somewhat depressing and so I’ve stuffed these desires down. I mean deep down, down many layers of who knows what but it’s down there somewhere. Hope will sometimes peer its little head but its dashed by whatever thoughts I have or whatever lies I have been prone to believe or by whatever restrictions I put on my God.

Now, this is where I start to get a little squeamish. To what end do I have to allow this stuff to come up to the surface? Do I continue to stuff those things down? Or do I let them float up and feel them? The weight of them? The hope in them? The disappointment in them? Feel the uncomfortableness of them?

I think we need to bring these things up and allow them to make us feel all the feels.

I think sometimes we need to wrestle with God regarding them. This may be a controversial statement but I think it’s a necessary thing. Last year I was part of a small group of women in my church that went through an inductive bible study. One of the things we learned and that really stuck with me was that when we are stuck on something, when we cant figure it out and we just want to throw our hands up in surrender and wave our white flag that’s when we are on the verge of learning just what we need to. As humans we want to just breeze through things without feeling anything bad or uncomfortable. And I think sometimes we stuff these “things”down so far that we forget. Or we just don’t want to waste the time and energy to wrestle with God because maybe, like me, you have lost faith that God can or will even do anything. Sometimes we need God to touch our hip, just like He touched Jacobs, to break us. We need these things that we struggle with and wrestle with to break us down so we can get to the heart of the issue. So that we can get to the uncomfortable point before the breakthrough.

The other night as I talked to my friend and she shared heartbreak with me we both spoke of just not knowing what the future is going to hold and where the Lord is leading us, the Lord touched my hip. He told me that I don’t have faith in Him. That I don’t have faith that He can do what I think He cannot or maybe what I think He will not.

How dare I think He cant do something. He’s God, who do I think I am? That I, or my situation, or the state that I am in life would be too much for Him to overcome? It’s a ridiculous thought and even as I type the words it seems ridiculous.

I need to work on my faith in all areas, I need to know He is enough. As I sat in church service last Sunday and we sang worship the words, “Jesus you are enough” rang out. As those words drifted through the speakers and as I sat in my seat that line floated down to me and quieted my soul right then and there. These words made me stop and really listen and hear them, “Jesus you are enough”. I had to stop and ask myself Jesus are you enough? Not really asking if He is enough because I know that He is. But asking myself, if I really believe He is enough that He is more than enough for me. That whatever He has to bring to me, that whatever He has for my life is more than enough for me.

Because He will meet all of my needs because He has met all of my needs thus far.

Because He has met all of my desires that were founded in Him thus far.

Because where I am and what I have in life has everything to do with Him and Him being enough and Him meeting my needs and my desires.

So I have to sit back and I have to let those words sink in. I have to wrestle with God and I have to allow Him to come in and touch my heart and my hip and give me a limp. I want to have a testimony of what God has done. If wrestling with Him brings me to the realization that He is enough then I’m game.

The reality is that when I seek Him, He will carry me through. We may be wounded and we may be scarred but He will bandage us, He will put us back together. He will love us even when we are in the state of hurting and feeling and struggling and wrestling He’s right there by our side the whole way. So, I can struggle and I can wrestle and we can call each other and cry on the phone and speak words of truth into each other’s lives. We can go back and forth with scripture and still come up not certain as to all the answers but as long as we’re seeking God I think we’re in an ok place I think we’re fine. So keep seeking the Lord. Keep turning to Him. Keep wrestling.

Keep struggling.

Don’t quiet those things but bring them up to the surface. Search His word, invite in fellowship and accountability. Be where He has you but also wrestle and struggle in that place if you need to because its in that place that we grow and learn and desire more. It’s in that place that we grow closer to Him and it’s in that place that we remember that He is faithful and my faith and hope is safe in Him.

My Big Neon Sign

I am a cat-less cat lady or a grandchild-less grandmother (another post for another day) and I’m okay with that. I gladly identify with those things. What I struggle to identify with is being in my mid-30’s and single.

Yep, I said it.  

It’s out there and it stings a little and some days it stings a lot.  

You know those things that are so vulnerable in your life? Those things that you don’t want to give life or breath to because once you do there’s no taking them back. Even though people know said “thing” about you, you hope it isn’t what defines you? Or you hope that you can distract from it? But you know that once you mention it that’s all people will think when they see you? Like a large neon sign that follows you around. Like on one of those medication adds that lists all of the hazardous side effects and you think “why the world would anybody make this or try to sell it or consider taking this?” And then you remember big Pharma and ….

Oh, sorry tangent. 

So back to the big neon signs following you around pointing out your vulnerable truth. One of mine is singleness. I think that there are more women out there that are my age or younger or older that feel the same way. And that is why I’m writing and hanging my big neon sign above my head for all to see. So that any of you out there that feel the same way can find comfort in knowing you’re not alone. You have community and other sisters out there that are in the same boat. I want to share in this experience with you all or maybe just you, yes you, but either way I want to share.  

I remember being in my mid to late 20’s being surrounded by amazingly Godly friends who, one by one got married and then one by one started having babies. These same amazing women invited me and continue to invite me into their lives but at some point I started to realize I was walking a path alone. My community, our lives were quickly becoming so different. It got harder and harder to connect mentally and even just physically, meaning it’s hard to even plan to see my friends because our lives can be so vastly different at times that connecting becomes a challenge. (Funny side note. I was reading Lauren Grahams book today and she totally talks about this!! In my head I was like, I would totally be friends with Lorelei Gilmore!! Sorry, back to your regularly scheduled blog post) When I say my friends are the best I mean it. I know they are there for me through anything and just a text away. But I was missing a connection. I needed to connect with other single women my age, in my same life phase and I was finding it, well, hard to find. I searched the blogosphere and found one. One blog that I could connect with. One girl that spoke my single language who wrote words about feelings that I could relate to. I would sit at my desk and read the latest blog entry and many times cry because it was real and vulnerable and I understood it and it understood me. 

I want to be that.  

I am at a place in life where I think I can be that, or at least I feel like the Lord asking me to be that. I am ready to wear my neon sign in solidarity with or for women who aren’t ready to.  And I’m ready to do so clumsily.

That’s what I hope this blog is.  

I hope it is me wearing my sign so that you can see it and relate and be relieved of your burden of singleness or barrenness in any area of life. That area that is unfulfilled or that you feel your growth is stunted in. You see, I think this area of “singleness” is in many women’s lives not just the single girl. I think it’s also in the girl that feels alone in marriage or in parenthood or in her career or the woman that is having trouble having her own children or even for the girl who desires deep and true friendship. For Whatever state of “singleness” you find yourself in, my hope is, my heart is, that this would be a place of respite from the loneliness of it.   

I also know better. I know that marriage is not a happily ever after. Just like I’m sure you see that children or new friends or a new career won’t fulfill you either. I get that. I see that. I don’t want that. I know I wont ever have that outside of Jesus because He has to be enough. I also know that even with Jesus that feeling of barrenness and singleness is real. I know that as a mom of young children you can feel alone and can get lost in the day to day of raising and caring for little lives, you can forget what an important job that is at times. I know that some days can just look like mounds of laundry and maintaining your sanity through tantrums and potty training. I know that you can feel just as alone or lonelier in a marriage. I’m not trying to diminish any of those things. I think what I would like or what I’m trying to get at is that we all need to bear with each other in love and understanding. 

Ephesians 4:1-3 tells us “Therefore, I the prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, accepting one another in love, diligently keeping the unity of the spirit with the peace that binds us.” 

I think we so often forget this. We need to remember this. We need to live like this. All sides, all opinions, all walks of life. We are women that God created. In different walks of life. In different stages. I think it’s safe to say we all want to be known and loved for who we are. For who God made us to be and in that we are not different. We are the same. Let’s work to understand and bear each other’s burden of “singleness” whatever that looks like for you or the women you serve with or your friends or neighbor. Let’s remind each other we are not alone. 


P.S. this picture above is just a testiment to how awesome my friends are. I sent this post to a friend before I posted to get feedback and she sent this back to me. So much love. I love you my Deanna Schrantz😍

To blog or not to blog?

 

I feel the need to write.

It’s something that’s been on my heart. To write. To get my thoughts and ponderings out. To write for the Lord because I want to glorify Him with all of my life and would love an outlet to pour out what He has filled me with. And last but not least to write from the perspective of the 30 something single girl in the church. So many times I have sought to find other women who can bear in love and understanding, my position of singleness. The Lord has thankfully given me some amazingly Godly friends who are in the same boat and also so amazing Godly friends who invite me into their lives even though my season in life may not be the same as theirs. For that I am seriously grateful. With that said this is not going to be a one note blog, in fact I’m not completely sure where this is going but here I am ready move forward. So even if this goes out in to the lost internet files somewhere, I have started writing.

 

Life is not a romantic comedy but I am Eve.

Life is not a romantic comedy. As much as I would love it to be so, it is not. I think I would get annoyed at some point with a drama or a musical all that dancing and brooding would tire me out but a romantic comedy,that would be great. A fun soundtrack, a love interest that would make grand romantic gestures just to win my affections. My quirks and failings would be charming and cute. In the end everything works out and you don’t have to deal with real life after the happily ever after. In fact you can relive the whole thing over again by pressing play! Sounds kind of amazing right? I mean I really think  people would understand me as a person better if I was a character in a romantic comedy but that’s besides the point.

I am getting to a point just bear with me I get sidetracked sometimes, which you would find endearing if this was a Romcom.

Reality is, life is not a romantic comedy. Life is real. Plot twists and story lines will not propel my story forward. It will take much longer than a series of sad scenes for my character to get over a broken heart and the consequences for my failed actions will have a greater, longer lasting affect on me and my loved ones than just a few minutes and a few flashes of despair only to be redeemed by my true love realsing that he simply cannot live without me and so life is restored to order, the sun shines, birds sing and my wardrobe just keeps getting better.

Nope. Not real life.

So how does our character, how do we get propelled forward? How does our plot change and twist? How do we know when to and how to move forward? What steps do I take and how do I know when to step on the crack and when it’s going to break my mothers back? How do I know when to leave my glass slipper and when I just need to leave? How do I know when to pack up my bags and travel hundreds of miles away to start a new life, in a new town, for it to start out horribly and end fantastically? How do I know? How do I choose? I mean is it Eanie, Meanie, Minie or Moe? And if they choose you does that mean you win or lose?

So many things. So many options. So many decisions.

Holding all of these decisions up to the Word of God I look at the women of the Bible. Eve, Ruth, Naomi, Deborah, Hannah, Abigail and on and on. These women, just like us, had to live life, they had to live real life and in fact they had no idea what a romcom was so they didn’t even know how good life could be if only. What I mean is they had thoughts and pondered decisions, they were tempted and wanted and desired things. They all failed but they all loved the Lord. they made bad decisions but the Lord came in and blessed them anyways or should I say despite them. Eve, well we all know about Eve. Eve was tempted, she gave in to said temptation (no I am not letting Adam off the hook but I am focusing on Eve because I can relate), she gave ear to the enemy and talked herself in to sinning. Eve was punished. I think Eve felt some of the highest highs, giving birth for the very first time, EVER! In the history of EVER! Holding the very first newborn all fresh and warm and snuggly. She got to live in Eden and roam the garden with the Lord. On the flip side Eve and Adam for that matter experienced the lowest lows, the first death and that being her own child who was murdered by her other child. I mean the depths of despair that must have brought. And that is just the tip of the ice burg or the arch of the story. I am Eve, I identify with major failings. I identify with being tempted and giving in to the love of things and beauty and knowledge.

All these women had hard decisions, not all gave them over to the Lord and in those moments they lost. They got in the way but the Lord redeemed them and blessed them because they loved Him and their testimonies, their lives would further His kingdom and speak to us here and now.

Maybe none of this makes sense but the clarity I received tonight as I pondered all of this was that when we try as humans as fallen people, when we step and decide and make a move without setting our story before the Lord we fail. This is not a romcom, I am not the center of it all. The sooner we realize that and succumb to that thought and surrender ourselves and lives to the Lord and be who we are called us to be in the moment. To do what He asks you to do and be and move and live, even when we don’t ask or want that life or situation that’s the moment that His story line will be propelled forward. That’s when the Lord will be glorified. That’s when people will know Him. That’s when life no longer becomes about our happy ending or our story line but life becomes about His. That’s when we know we are right where we are supposed to be not worrying about our glass slipper or when we’re going to get our makeover montage but when we know our life reflects Him and that’s all that really matters.

In the end life is not a romantic comedy, it’s even better because my happily ever after has no end, my happily ever after is eternal.

 

 

A restored hope in hope

Hope. Hope has been a word that has been chasing me the last couple of weeks. Let me start off by telling you a story.

When I was in High School my best friend got nominated for the Homecoming court. We were so excited, as high school girls are about most things. I helped her pick out a dress , a long sequins dress a al Beverly Hills 90210, watched as she got her hair done in a french twist Just like Kelly Taylor and got her nails did, french tip style like Brenda Walsh. Unknown

 

 

 

 

Yes, we were the product of the 90’s.

Anyways, we were excited, just like Kelly and Brenda.

I watched from the bleachers with her family as she was paraded around the football field and propped up on a stage. The names were read off and finally the moment of truth. All of our anticipation had led up to this moment, the moment we both never really spoke out loud but we both knew, the moment her name would be read aloud for all to hear. As she stood on the stage all sparkly and bright a name was read but it wasn’t her own. There was just a deafening absence of a name. Another name was called and a different sparkly girl came forward to receive her spoils and a crowd full of loud accolades. I watched as my friend was escorted off the stage and I ran down the bleachers to meet her behind them and no words were spoken, we just ran to each other (yes, dramatic. What do you expect we were in High School) and hugged and we both cried. We cried because of the loss, the loss of a hope. I cried because of my friends loss and because she cried and because I was in High School and that’s what High School girls do. She cried for all of those reasons but also because she was embarrassed. Embarrassed for being paraded around and stood on stage in front of what seemed like a million people. She cried because she hoped for the win and was crushed in front of a crowd full of people, made to feel inadequate and small, oh so small, in front of everybody. I’m sure by the next day we were out at the mall fixing all of her crushed hopes but for that moment it was tragic and painful.

I tell you this story because I like to tell stories and because this is how I have viewed hope.

I read this quote last week:

“It is ok to hope. It is safe to hope. For my hope is in Christ Jesus.”

When I read that I realized that hope is an issue for me.  I realized that I didn’t think of hope as safe but rather as a liability. And then a read a blog about hope and the fear of hoping because hoping means we put ourselves out there, just like my high school friend did. I think that all of these years I’ve been afraid to hope because I was afraid that my hope would be paraded around in a sparkly dress with a french twist in its hair and french tips and then my hope would be put on a stage only to be crushed and made small and me crushed and small with it. I didn’t want to chance hoping because I didn’t want to chance being put on display for all to see and then being stomped on when my hope was not fulfilled.

A verse the Lord gave me a long time ago is Proverbs 13:12 “Hope deferred makes the heart-sick, but when the desire comes it is a tree of life.” For so many years I’ve focused on the first part the part I know to be true “Hope deferred makes the heart-sick” boy does it, I think we can all attest to that. The part I forget and have chosen to forget for fear that I would have to take action is the latter “When the desire comes it is a tree of life.” You see the Lord doesn’t stop at us being heart-sick. No. He goes on to then replace those desires those hopes we have with His hopes and desires for us and when those come to fruition and they will because God put them there then it’ll be a tree of life. Abundant and bearing fruit and life. A beautiful picture indeed. That does mean however that we do have to hope and we have to place that hope in Jesus and sometimes our hopes will fail. Sometimes our hopes and prayers will not come true and we will feel let down and embarrassed we will feel defeated and crushed but then we learn, we learn to put our hopes in Christ and learn to trust that He will do with them as He see’s fit and we have to be okay with that. Let’s hope, those of us who have been casting our hopes aside or pretending like we don’t have any. As we hope let’s surrender those hopes at the feet of Jesus and let’s hope in Him because let’s face it He’s the only one that can turn our hopes in to His desires and then make them fruitful and give them life.

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