Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Hope ? Really ?

What do you hope for when the thing you really hoped for is gone? How can you dream about tomorrow when all you loved today has been taken? Where is hope when it seems like hope failed? What do I live for now? These are the questions I ask myself on almost a daily basis. It has taken me to a whole new level of thinking when it comes to hope. Hope no longer means that I want a big income tax return (or how about I just don’t owe our great government any money), a great seat sale, a nice haircut or delicious meal. It doesn’t even mean healing. The one think that I hoped for, that I yearned for, cried out for, ached in my heart for,  fell to my knees for didn’t happen. So what was the point of all the effort when the thing I wanted the most was not what I got.  What I got was a life I didn’t plan on having. I didn’t plan on spending the first few years of our marriage struggling to keep it together and the next few years fighting to keep my son.  Sure I got the house and the 2.7 kids (ok well actually I got 5 if we are going to be picky) but I didn’t get the dream that I scratched out on the back of my coil notebook when I was in high school and desperately in love with Sheldon (sshhh don’t tell anyone).  What I received was something greater because it wasn’t my plan it was God’s plan. I don't see it yet, but I do have hope. 

My only hope for a ‘good life” now is that God keeps His promises. Promises to redeem and to lift up. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted”. (Matthew 5:4). While out on a walk with a good friend the other night we spoke about missing someone you love so much, that we could never imagine being ‘given’ anything as good as what we had. There is NOTHING that I want more on this earth than to hold my son in my arms again. To be responsible for him and love him and touch him and hear his voice. How is it possible the God is able to redeem that type of pain? How can this wrong be made right? This type of desperate situation breeds a new form of hope. A hope that we can’t imagine. We can imagine every other thing “we want”. We can imagine the new car, the beautiful new baby, the raise, the house, the gorgeous husband (that’s for you Chris), the healing. We can imagine it because most of us have seen it or at least heard about it. But I do not have the wherewithal to imagine how God will weave this pattern to Good.  But if we believe that God is good, and only good, then we must hope for that which we can’t imagine, that which we can’t see. I can only have very small images in my mind of what heaven might look and sound like. What is might be like to hold my kids again. This is real hope.

Hope when everything else seems wrong and impossible. Death is the only permanent thing that man cannot fix. All the money in the world would not have saved my son, all the power in the world would not have kept him walking on this earth. We know the only person to conquer death is Jesus. He would not be kept down by evil. And because he conquered death He created a special kind of hope.  A hope to hold onto when there is no more hope. Hope in heaven, hope in redemption, perfection with the father, an eternal life that doesn’t end and our dreams will come true. Have you ever really taken a moment to think about what heaven might be like? Probably not. Most people don’t until they are forced to imagine what their loved ones might be doing. Will I see them again? Will we be just be spirits floating around each other? I like to think not. I believe it when the bible says in 1 Corinthians:

 For we know that when this tent we live in - our body here on earth - is torn down, God will have a house in heaven for us to live in, a home he himself has made, which will last forever.

This is my hope. My new house, my new body in heaven.  And until this day arrives I will live the way God has asked us to live. And I will hope for the day when I can touch my sons again. 

Pastor Chad reminded us the other day that when we ask the question, What is God’s will for me? What am I supposed to be doing? And i ask myself this question all the time now. The bible has a very clear answer – and it is great. “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in ALL circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. “ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
God doesn’t require a lot of fancy things from us. He wants us to talk to him, lots. He wants us to rejoice and be happy, really happy and He wants us to be thankful.  If you do all of these things your heart will begin to align with God and everything else will make sense. Ok maybe not total sense but a peace will come to you that only God can bring. And things that shouldn’t be ok will somehow be ok. And the things you think you wanted, won’t matter as much. People you dislike won’t seem so irritating and the life you thought you wanted….well that probably will change too. Being content in your heart just as you sit tonight. That is peace and acceptance directly from God, who loves us more than we can fathom.  
Please say a prayer tonight for little Luca whose “sneaky tumor” (luca’s own choice words!) has returned and it trying to steal his life her on earth. His family is going to battle and he will need all the prayer warriors he can get. Please get on your knees for Luca tonight.

Christian, mommy loves you so much. I can’t put into words the pain of missing you each day. Thank you for staying close and reminding me you are near. I love you all the way to the death star and back.