Having Hope

1618416_10152266539789269_1201072902_nOne year ago today, I arrived home from work to a garage that didn’t have my husband’s truck in it. That may not seem unusual to you, but Steve is as punctual and predictable as a Swiss clock. He is always where he says he will be, never a minute late. I walked through the empty garage into the kitchen and found my husband in bandages. It didn’t seem so bad until we looked at the truck in the junkyard the next day. By God’s grace, Steve had hobbled away from a head-on collision.

1779098_10152266539424269_1804213834_nBest of all, he lives to hobble today (just a temporary condition due to having a brand new titanium knee)! And better yet, his heart spills over with thanks to God for his never-ending blessings.

Thinking about that day as I commuted this morning, one verse filled my mind.

The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is Your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

Just before that familiar passage, Jeremiah reflects on his afflictions. He can’t forget the bitter years of wandering. His soul becomes bowed down in remembering. He looks back but he doesn’t wallow in the memories. Instead he says:

This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.

Remembering where he came from, and how the Lord met him there, gave him hope. Trusting in God isn’t an act of blind wishing or worrying, with your fingers crossed behind your back. When you trace God’s fingerprints in your life and recount his goodness to you, you become infused with courage to continue to believe him. For today. For tomorrow.

Any day that you wake up is a good day. When I lived in the African-American community for my cross-cultural training, I soaked in the wonderful example of the people I worshipped with. They reminded me to be grateful for the simplest things. They’d start each day by thanking God that they got up that morning.

A friend posted another echo of this reminder to have hope on facebook today:

Dear God, Today I woke up. I’m healthy. I’m alive. I’m blessed. I apologize for all my complaining. I’m truly grateful for all you have done in my life.

Have hope, friend!

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