by Joy Anisa
I uttered a heartbroken plea to my Heavenly Father asking Him for a pretty bow to go on His very messy gift. My life was unraveling faster than I could comprehend, and I was beginning to accept that what was being allowed to pass through my Father’s hands had come with purpose. Nevertheless, it did not lessen my pain. The whole matter was just messy and ugly.
I did not share that prayer with anyone. His answer was divinely orchestrated weeks later. But while my kind, gentle Heavenly Father had allowed the discomfort, in the end, He used my distress to reveal Himself in an up-close and personal way. And that, I knew, was my bow.
Satan wants to convince us that we should handle things on our own. He lures us into hiding our mess, so everyone will continue to think well of us. But God has better things in mind.
“…We also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (Romans 5:3-5, NKJV). Four powerful words of truth, “hope does not disappoint”!
Our hope does not come from anything we have or could do. Our hope is in Christ alone.
Hope entered a broken world. Hope hung on a cross to cover us with grace and mercy. Hope continues to grow us into perfectly reflecting His character. Hope is birthed from a love that is perfect and pursues our soul at all cost.
When we think of gifts, we think perfect and beautiful. Sometimes God’s gift to us is not what we had in mind. But our mess and ugly circumstances can be an unexpected gift. What if we changed our perspective and trusted in His divine purpose in the middle of the chaos? What if we believed Solomon when he wrote “He has made everything beautiful in its time”? Ecclesiastes 3:11a NIV
When you find yourself thinking that you cannot take much more, you are in the perfect place for finding hope outside yourself. God places the seed of hope in the dark and dismal, because it is there we realize we need Him. Hope quietly whispers, “Rest in Me, I will carry you and light your path.” And holds us with a grip that will not let go.
“I wait for the Lord, my soul does wait, And in His word do I hope.” Psalm 130:5 NASB
About the author: Joy Anisa speaks for women’s retreats, MOPS, and Single Mom conferences. Her book, Identity Crisis: Moving from Crisis to Credibility, offers an invitation to hope in the God who loves deeply, heals wounds, and offers His joy when life around us crumbles. You can find Joy on FB, Twitter, and Instagram. Joy lives with her husband, Jeff and their son, Caid, in Conyers, GA.
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Join the conversation: How have you placed your hope in the Lord?