When did hopelessness sneak in? How did I get there? I have never been one to lose hope, yet there I was with this fog hanging over me and melancholy filling my soul.
The lack of joy and peace in my days was a sure sign that I had indeed lost hope, but still I didn’t understand how it happened. In my head I knew all the verses, all that I needed to keep hope alive, yet my heart let it slip away.
My future seemed so unclear; so dark. My present, so monotonous. My outlook, so grey. The words of my mouth and meditations of my heart surely weren’t pleasing to the Lord. They were just so dark.
I knew that hope was the answer. I needed to find hope again, but when you’ve lost it, even getting it back can seem hopeless. How do you find hope once it’s lost?
The New Living Translation of Romans 15:13 refers to God as the source of hope. He’s the source. So that’s the first step. Plug into the source, like an electrical plug joining the circuit.
The verse goes on to say that He will fill us with joy and peace because we trust in him. That’s the next step. Trust in Him.
My outlook on life had become so dark because I was trying like crazy to figure it out on my own. My head was saying trust Him, but my heart was trapped by uncertainty and anxiety. Just reaffirming my trust in him produced the spark that it takes to rekindle a fire.
Jeremiah 29:11 was the song in my heart that kept reminding me that my God is a trustworthy God; He has plans for my life, plans to give me a future and a hope.
Verses like Jeremiah 29:11 that speak to our souls and reaffirm our trust serve as the solid ground God gives us to stand on to keep us from slipping back into the miry pit of hopelessness and despair. Encouragement through the scriptures is another key piece of finding and hanging on to hope.
Romans 15:4 says, “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope.”
The last piece of finding hope is endurance. The Bible links hope and endurance numerous times. Not only is endurance inspired by hope, endurance leads to hope.
Earlier in the week, I posted this question on Facebook, “What is your personal definition of endurance?” Words that were used to define endurance included standing firm, outlasting, facing pain, moving forward, never quitting. What amazed me is that I posed the question in a non-spiritual sort of way, but the majority of the personal definitions of endurance I received included something about holding tightly to Jesus, keeping the faith, trusting God or something of that nature.
We are able to endure (stand firm, outlast, face pain, move forward, and never quit) when (and only when) we hold tightly to Jesus, keep the faith, and trust God to sustain us through all things. That’s where hope is born!
Maybe you, too, have lost sight of hope. Somewhere through the darkened lenses of an unclear future or a painful, or even monotonous, present, you have let hope slip away.
What if today, you take these steps to rekindle your hope?
- Tap into the source.
- Trust God.
- Find an encouraging word in scripture to stand on.
- Endure (stand firm holding tightly to Jesus)
…you will overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)