The Hope That Endures

pexels-photo-311391.jpegThis past Friday was a difficult one. While nothing bad or major happened, I felt heart-break very keenly. I spent Friday wrapped in the grief of missing a spouse. I considered how good my life had been. I missed everything that had been taken from me. I pondered what would have been had my husband never gotten sick. I remembered how his disease changed him, softened him. I remembered how he grew closer to his savior in that 19 months than he had in the whole 27 years preceding his diagnosis.

Then, I thought of my baby, and how she would not have come to be if my heart had never been ripped out of my chest. Then, I remembered the words spoken to me about other children by my dying husband just months before he passed, when we thought we might actually be making ground against that horrible cancer ravaging his body. These words told me to have other children with someone else one day because I’m a good mom and a good wife. These words told me that the man I married, who never wanted any kids in the first place, loved his 2 children so much and would have given me 10 more if it was what I wanted, because he wanted me to be happy and because he loved me.

Lost in grief, I started watching movie clips of our life together. I saw him playing guitar, playing with our babies, filming me (unknowingly) and telling the camera how much he loved me, parenting our children, talking about his dreams and the things he loved in this world. I missed his voice. I missed his music. I missed his laugh. I missed him so much that I felt the pain of it like a knife in my gut. Our son heard his voice and asked me who that man was talking… and the knife twisted, hard. I don’t expect him to remember much of his father. He was only 2 when my husband died. But I can still hear him, clear as day sometimes. And it broke my heart that our son doesn’t remember his voice.

Then, the still small voice of my defender spoke into my heart. He said to me “I make all things new. I’m making this new. I’m bringing joy and hope.’

My new husband was brought immediately to my mind. As was our baby. I call her the tie that binds us. She binds us all together, melting our hearts into one family. This is new, and different. They both bring me joy. And so do my older children. We are all new in the works Christ is doing in us and through us. We’ve all been refined in this process, and made better.

In this process, I’ve found that God heals us. Psalm 147:3 says “He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” And as he heals, he makes new. Isaiah 43:2, 18-19 says, “When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you…But forget all that— it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Revelation 21:5 says, “And the one sitting on the throne said, ‘Look, I am making everything new!’ And then he said to me, ‘Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.’ ” And as he makes new, he brings joy. Romans 15:13 says, “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” This joy is because of the hope we have in him and his son, our salvation. 

I want to extend an offer to you. This offer is for the same hope that I have in Christ Jesus, my salvation. Being a follower of Christ doesn’t protect us from troubled times. But, it makes the troubled times able to be endured. He walks with us, carries us (sometimes kicking and screaming), holds us, protects us, defends us. If you haven’t accepted the hope that Jesus gives, I offer you now the chance. Jesus tells us (John 14:6) that he is the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father, except through him. You can spend all of your days (here and in eternity) walking in communion with the one who made you and breathed life into you. If you confess your sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive you (1 John 1:9). Ask him today to forgive you from your sins. He will make you new as well. Believe that he can and will make you new, believe that what he has told us in scripture is true, and that he died an undeserved death so that you can be made right with father. Choose to follow his leading in your life, to learn about him and to allow him to change you from the inside out.

If you’d like to accept this offer of salvation and eternal life, but have questions or are unsure of what to say or do, I’d love to help. Please send me a comment and I would be happy to speak (or email) with you. After all, who doesn’t want to be made new and given a hope that endures?!

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