I need hope in God. Do you? One look around and dismay fills my heart. Darkness abounds and it threatens to swallow me.
How does one stay hopeful and light-filled in a world of darkness? By finding refuge in the living God.
Last fall I wrote a series on Refuge Living. Today I revisit those articles because I’m discovering that hope is a lot easier if I make God my refuge. So, as we conclude The Hope Series, we remember God as our refuge.
I wrote this one because I deal with the difficulty of expectations versus reality. You know those times when you’re absolutely positive of one outcome and another one blindsides you? Yeah, those times when you feel like you hopped on a roller coaster and then realized the effects that spinning and twirling has on your stomach? Expectations, disappointment, and hope are entwined and if we can learn how to handle them, our hope grows.
Words matter. What you say to yourself impacts your beliefs about yourself, God, and others. In one short session of “stinking thinking,” we can dig up the seeds God plants in our heart or cut down the life he’s trying to grow in us. If our thoughts are hopeless, then how can we grow in hope? This article in The Refuge Series makes a way for us to re-write the words we say towards ourselves so that we don’t undo the work God is doing in our life. So that we might know hope in God.
When hope seems far off, and I’m broken, busted and bleeding, I remember the great eight. And I consider my circumstances to the great eight and know that as I make God my refuge, I will be blessed. I will find hope. There are circumstances that we can’t get away from, but we must live through. Prodigal children, wayward spouses, sickness, death, and abandonment. These are just a few of the things we live through in order to get through. But we can have hope in God even in the most dismal of circumstances. Consider the great eight.
Hope grows when we share it. I need to hear your stories. You need mine. Can I tell you one? I’ve struggled with rejection and fear of man for years. It’s my achilles heal, my thorn in the flesh, and my burden. But God is with me and as he peels back the layers, he reveals something more. Maybe it’s my own bitterness, my misplaced priorities, or pride that plays into this rejection issue, or maybe it’s resting in who he says he is and who he says I am. It’s all this and more, but the best part of it is this: God is giving me an opportunity to put these lessons about rejection into practice. I’m watching him rise up within me, and I’m seeing the healing hope he’s wrought, flourish like newborn seedlings. We need each other’s stories.
Hope in God. It’s part refuge living and part trust. It’s surrender to God within you.