hope

Do you ever feel like you are just running around, always out of time, always in a rush, always anxious to catch up to everyone else? It’s a sad reality, but I know that I do, and as I look around I notice that a lot of other people look as if they feel the same way.

The worn out.

The hurting.

The hope-less.

I’ve been there.

One thing that’s true about hopelessness is that it makes you feel alone in the midst of a big, swirling world. When so many of the people around us seem as if they are happy because they are in a relationship, it looks very attractive to be in a relationship as well–it seems like the only solution. When money becomes our motivation to live only because it can do more things, buy more things, and get more things that might make us happy, we lose sight of everything else in our world in order to “get”. It’s as if we are chasing a whim that disappears as soon as we think we have it–scary. That doesn’t mean money isn’t a great tool to wield or relationships aren’t great things to seek after while navigating this big ol’ world, that’s not what I’m saying. What I’m saying is that the constant seeking after these things in a(n often unhealthy) way that leads to great disappointment is something to avoid.

Easier said than done, Seth.

I know.      Yet, if we really want to break free of the cycle of “getting our hopes up–> being let down–> loneliness, regret, distorted self-worth–> repeat”, it is a necessary step we have to take. We have to be real with ourselves. Even if we aren’t real with each other (still, I hope you are real with the people around you), we have to stop lying to ourselves and accept who we are and what we desire.

–Granted, these emotions definitely can come upon us at anytime and definitely apart from the cycle I just described, but for the sake of the message, bear with me. —

Taking an in-depth look at myself is something that I am still working on for sure, but that doesn’t mean the progress that I have gained hasn’t helped. Personal reflection is a very neat thing when done with authenticity. It has allowed me to recognize the weaknesses in my life–the places that I need Jesus’ help in fixing, and it has also helped me identify some of the strengths and joys I get to use. With the strengths I am able to pour into other people’s lives, and with the weaknesses I am able to allow other’s to pour into my life. It’s humbling to realize that I don’t have it all figured out, but in the same instance it is also freeing. To know that I don’t have it all figured out (or that I don’t have to have it all figured out) gives me the freedom to mess up and make mistakes because I don’t have to be perfect for everyone,

or anyone, for that matter.

 

But how can we get from the hope-less to the hope-full?

It is a matter of perspective.

kind of.

We can self reflect all we want and change our attitude to look for the “good things in life” but none of it really does anything unless our heart changes. The heart has to change from life simply being about what will bring us happiness, to a knowledge of Who and what is our pure joy. Instead of merely thinking differently, we have to truly believe that God’s plan is so much greater than our own, and we have to trust that whatever will happen will be a benefit to us–no matter what we think of it or what others think of it. With that kind of trust we are able let go of chasing after a certain relationship because it will bring happiness, and instead we can dive deeper into “bettering” ourselves and trusting that our soulmate will come. Or might not come. Whatever our future holds, the peace of living in God’s plan brings freedom. Instead of chasing down money and then spending it on temporary “things”, the money that we make has no foothold over our lives. Instead, it really can be used as a tool to further the Kingdom of God, and enhance the lives of all of the people around us. With freedom flowing through our veins, life can be lived to the fullest extent possible. Hope can be something that we no longer try to catch on a sunny day–as if it were a butterfly that always seems within reach until you actually reach out for it. No no. Hope is now our greatest asset and the reason we can smile so brightly. It is in the very core of our being because we know that our life on earth doesn’t matter; we have a future much greater than we can imagine. We no longer have to work for approval because we know we are loved by the Creator of the universe. Life doesn’t seem as mundane because we trust that the Savior of the world did, in fact, die to save us.

 

Peace. Joy. Hope.

As always, I hope that you can get the major idea or at least a few points out of my post, but if there is only one thing you take away, please understand that you don’t have to live just like the rest of the world. You can be free and you can be joy-full. It’s more than just a mindset, it’s the embracing of an altered future. From sinful to free–only through Jesus.

John 3:16-21. For God so loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world that He might condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 Anyone who believes in Him is not condemned, but anyone who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the One and Only Son of God. 19 This, then, is the judgement: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone who practices wicked things hates the light and avoids it, so that his deeds may not be exposed.

21 But anyone who lives by the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be shown to be accomplished by God. 

live by the truth. that’s freedom.

 

live free.

-SM

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