“There’s no hope.”
Have you ever found yourself saying that? Have you ever found yourself in a circumstance where you truly believed there wasn’t an ounce of hope to be found? Maybe you are experiencing that right now. Maybe you are watching a friend or loved one wallow in that statement.
I have experienced that. I remember, when we were experiencing rocky times in our marriage, and I had just started going back to church, I felt hopeless. Odd, right? Why would I feel hopeless when I was just re-introduced to the God of hope? Well, I hadn’t yet fully committed my life to God, so I was partially blind to His extreme power….and to His grace.
My hopelessness came when God started to show me, through His word, all that I was doing against His will. It was a super humbling time for me.
Shame took over.
I was so ashamed at how I had been living my life that I couldn’t see past it. I was only focusing on the mistakes I had made and not on the grace and forgiveness that God was freely handing me.
I looked at what a terrible, disrespectful wife I had been and my husband, who had one foot out the door, and I couldn’t see hope…I only saw failure.
(To this day, I continue to work on my very black and white view of things… I am hard-wired to wrongly believe that if I am not “perfect” that I have somehow failed. Those thoughts DO NOT come from God)
Even in those days where I felt hopeless and I thought that my marriage was a “lost cause,” I continued to seek God’s guidance through His word. This verse came up:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13
How was I going to experience hope? In believing! See how that is worded? Let me break it down in the way God revealed it to me.
He is the God of hope.
He wants me to have joy and peace.
I will have joy and peace by believing.
When I fully believe, the power of the Holy Spirit will be in me.
Through the Spirit of God, I will experience overflowing hope!
Bottom line?? When we believe in Jesus Christ as Lord of our lives, there is ALWAYS HOPE! When we place our hope in Him, we experience joy and peace. He does this through His Spirit, which lives in all believers.
Now, if you are like me, you might be saying…..yeah, yeah, I know all that….BUT this circumstance is really hopeless….THIS MISTAKE is too terrible…..THIS person is beyond repair.
Friends, I get it. Sometimes what we are going through fills our minds completely and there is no room for God’s truth.
I picture it like this….when you are taking a photo of a beautiful landscape and you accidentally put your finger in front of the camera. There is a huge, gorgeous world waiting for you to capture it, and your little finger has now completely covered it. Your finger looks “huge” because it’s taking up the whole shot….but in actuality, it’s small, just a finger…and not nearly as vast and majestic as the landscape you were about to capture.
Our hopeless circumstance seems huge, but it’s just a little finger compared to the majesty of our God. Don’t let the circumstances of life, no matter how hopeless they may seem, rob you of capturing the majesty of God and carrying it with you all your days.
Shame was that “finger” for me. It covered the beautiful landscape God was placing before me. Eventually, through sticking with Him and continuing to strengthen my faith, I was able to see that His forgiveness and love and grace was there even before my shame took over…I just had to see it and accept it. Once I did, by the power of the Holy Spirit, I was overflowing with hope! That hope carried me through even darker days ahead.
Placing your trust in God and receiving His hope doesn’t mean that hopeless circumstance is going to get “fixed” in the way you desire or anticipate. Remember, God is in charge. Trust Him. He knows you, He knows what you truly need. And He loves you with a love you can’t even imagine.
May you abound in hope, friends!