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The Hope For the Future

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God Offers us Hope for the future ahead

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Introduction

“I’m sorry. But this has to happen…I love you.” Written on a piece of white copy paper, those are the last words Joseph and Patrice Bright received from their daughter. Fourteen-year-old Anna Bright killed herself April 18, 2017.
Viewing records retrieved afterward revealed that unbeknownst to her parents and without their permission, Anna had binge-watched the first season of 13rw just two weeks prior to her death. The show was popular among her peers and even filled the text messages sent back and forth between Anna and a friend during the days leading up to her suicide.
Joseph’s heart started pounding; his immediate thought was to text her; she always had her cell phone. He tested her. No Response.
They ran back to the house and rushed inside screaming her name. No Answer.
“I went to he bathroom, and the door was about a foot open. I pushed it open, and there she was,” Joseph said.
Assuming she had been murdered, he grabbed his phone and called 911. In no time, neighbors, policemen, investigators, and first responders flooded the cul-de-sac of their quiet Alabama neighborhood.
Exactly an hour after Joseph had texted Anna, his wife Patrice, who had mistakenly left her cell phone at home that day, returned from work. Not knowing what was going on, she drove into the chaos.
You would think this real event happened in a home where Satan was worshipped, or there was no love, instead, this event happened in the home of a former pastor. Satan convinced this young lady that the only solution to a temporary problem was permanent and that her life was utterly hopeless. It seems the powers of hell are thriving today in our turbulent culture. Without a doubt there is an all out war on the horizon in our world and the precious lives of our little children hang precariously in the balance.
“About the time I was getting out of the car, I saw Joseph,” Patrice said, “He was coming across the lawn, and he had a police officer under each arm – almost carrying him, so I knew something had happened to the kids. I got out of the car, and Joseph yelled across the lawn: ‘Anna’s dead. Somebody killed her.’ It felt like somebody had taken a 2x4 and smacked it against my legs,” Patrice said.
She fell to the ground.
Their minds were flooded with questions, then fear that Anna’s killer was still out there somewhere.
“Who told you that somebody killed her?” a police officer asked.
Joseph had noticed spent bullet casing on the floor in front of the tub, so he concluded that his daughter had been murdered.
The lead detective said, “Mrs. Bright, she did this.” He also said she mimicked the suicide form the Netflix series 13 Reasons why.
You would think this real event happened in a home where Satan was worshipped, or there was no love, instead, this event happened in the home of a former pastor. Satan convinced this young lady that the only solution to a temporary problem was permanent and life was utterly hopeless. It seems the powers of hell are thriving today in our turbulent culture. Without a doubt there is an all out war on the horizon in our world and the precious lives of our little children hang precariously in the balance.
But today, I am here to remind you that there is Hope! For it is in the midst of crisis we realize our desperate need for an infinite Saviour! Today, our Hope is not found on anything less than Jesus Blood and His righteousness! Christ is not only needed in the Church where we gather, He is not only needed the leaders of our nation, but we desperately need the hope that He offers in the hearts and lives of each of us today!
The only place of real enduring hope is found in Jesus Christ!

What is Hope? Hope is the Expectation of good, while fear is the expectation of evil.
2 Timothy 1:7 KJV 1900
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

I. Hope is found in God alone

I. Hope is found in God alone

Romans 8:20–22 KJV 1900
For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
Romans 8:

A. Man Cannot provide Hope (v.20)

In verse 20, the word, “Vanity” points us to our quality of being worthless or futile. We find there is a frailty, there is a deprivation of truth.
In Solomon's Lamentations, we read this truth
Ecclesiastes 1:2 KJV 1900
Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
On our own, in our own power, there is no hope for man.
Isaiah 64:6 KJV 1900
But we are all as an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; And we all do fade as a leaf; And our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
v. 20-vanity means our weaknesses,
Through the years, each of us have been influenced by men, both good and bad. Yet, I am reminded that while God has used the influence of godly men to help shape and mold us, ultimately, our hope must come from God alone.
We are grateful that God has used the influence of godly men to help shape and mold us, ultimately, our hope must come from God alone.
If our belief is founded in the world’s philosophy, which has been developed by the reason and abilities of men, then we must recognize the limitations of our hope is the limitations of man himself.
Man has not discovered why we age.
Man does not know the end of the universe
Man has not discovered the depths of the sea
Man has not mapped the far regions of the world.
We can’t even get a cell signal on Stockton lake!
We are limited, and being limited, our hope in man must also be limited.
Modern philosophy (not science) has taught us today that:
We were a cosmic accident, which occured after an explosion that could never have happened, from matter that we do not even know how it arrived (which goes contrary to the laws of physics). After billions of years, the earth was formed, then cooled by rain falling on the rocks for millions of years. After the rain stopped, remaining goop that was left on planet earth held a mystical power to have the ability for life to spontaneously generate. Through the process of time two of these mysterious creatures somehow crawled out of this soup, found each other, and were able to procreate something that looked nothing like themselves, which process happened over and again thousands of times getting better and better until at the end of this fairy tale, we find you and I standing here today.
If you can believe this system of thought, which requires more faith than , you are left hopeless and without a real purpose to live for.
Ephesians 2:12 KJV 1900
That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:

The Greeks recognized that human beings expressed hope by nature; however, this kind of hope reflects both good and bad experiences. The future was thus a projection of one’s own subjective possibilities (Bultmann, “ἐλπίς, elpis,” 2.517). Biblical hope avoids this subjectivity by being founded on something that provides a sufficient basis for confidence in its fulfillment: God and His redemptive acts as they culminate in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

B. God alone delivers Hope (v. 21)

1 Peter 3:15 KJV 1900
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
1 Peter 1:3 KJV 1900
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Romans 15:13 KJV 1900
Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.
We learn that through the power of God’s Word, we have confidence and hope!
1 Peter
Romans 15:4 KJV 1900
For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.
If you find yourself in despare Go to God’s Word!

II. Hope is found in God’s promises

Romans 8:23–25 KJV 1900
And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

A. Hope of a Bright Eternity (v. 23-24)

The confidence that, by integrating God’s redemptive acts in the past with trusting human responses in the present, the faithful will experience the fullness of God’s goodness both in the present and in the future.

Biblical faith rests on the trustworthiness of God to keep His promises

In other words, because of the past faithfulness of God, we can trust in the future work of God.

B. Hope in Waiting (v. 25)

Isaiah 40:31 KJV 1900
But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings as eagles; They shall run, and not be weary; And they shall walk, and not faint.
We are waiting on the coming of Christ. When we wait on God, it does not mean we sit passively by.
Just as now, we do not passively wait for the Lord to work, instead we are actively serving Him out of a heart of expectation and hope that He is returning soon.

III. Hope is found in Relationship

Romans 8:26–34 KJV 1900
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
Romans 8:

A. Help for our weakness (v. 26-28)

While verse 20 depicts for us the problems we face, and the hopelessness of the human race without God, we noticed that the very beginning of gives us the solution to our inadequacies.
The incredible power of God is available to every Christian through the filling of the Spirit. Notice, that we are not talking about you receiving all of the Holy Spirit, that happened at the moment of salvation when you were indwelt by the Spirit. You received the Holy Spirit then, but what we are referring to is our willingness to submit ourselves completely to the work of God in our lives. When we are willing to do so, we willingly put ourselves in a position that God can work in and through us.
Psalm 66:18 KJV 1900
If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear me:
Hope is found when we are willing to submit completely and totally to the will of god in our life.
- Evidence of the Spirit filling is power to witness (not sign gifts)
Acts 1:8 KJV 1900
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

B. Assurance in our Position (v. 29-30)

Notice as well that God gives for us the incredible promise that, no matter how terrible of circumstances we find ourselves, God can take the most dire of situations and make the work out for our Good and His glory!
This requires faith that God is able to work in any situation. Why is it that God commands us not to worry? Because He is in control of the situation, and we can rest assured that he knows what He is doing. He will work it out for Good. There is NEVER a reason to despair, even if we don’t understand how it will happen.
Isaiah 55:7 KJV 1900
Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts: And let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; And to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
Isaiah 55:5 KJV 1900
Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, And nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee Because of the Lord thy God, And for the Holy One of Israel; for he hath glorified thee.
Romans 8:28 KJV 1900
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
B. Assurance in our Position (v. 29-30)

B. Assurance in our Position (v. 29-30)

God has a plan for your life. This plan for you is to be conformed into the image of God’s son. You have been called, and with this calling we are responsible to answer to Him the one who bought us by his blood. We are justified - Made as if we never sinned. And one day we will be glorified. Removed from the presence of sin!
Sonship
Romans 8:16
Romans 8:16 KJV 1900
The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
Friendship
Friendship
John 15:15 KJV 1900
Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
John 14:
We gain confidence in the position that God has placed us in. We are not bastards, or outcasts, but we are the sons and daughters of God. There is no divorce court in the Court of God. He will not separate us out. if you have placed your faith in christ, we have hope because there is NOTHING that can separate us from the Love of God in Christ Jesus.
This confidence does NOT give a license to sin.

C. Confidence in His love (V. 31-34)

Who is mightier than God? NO ONE!
1 John 4:4 KJV 1900
Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.
Remember that when we see the hand of Satan on the offensive, we must remember that the one that keeps us is mightier than satan. There is nothing that can honestly separate us from His truth!
Titus 1:2 KJV 1900
In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;
God loved us this much: (v. 32)
Romans 5:8 KJV 1900
But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
The Accuser is Silenced (v. 33-34)
Revelation 12:10 KJV 1900
And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
Christ stands as our advocate, and intervenes on our behalf. He is our defender, and stands against Satan’s attacks.
1 John 2:1 KJV 1900
My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:
If anyone has the right to accuse, it is Christ, yet we find in him a willingness to forgive, then to defend!
APPLICATION: How important is it that we forgive as Christ did? To allow our children to see christ in us, we must be willing to forgive as Christ forgave.

IV. Hope in our security (v. 35-39)

Romans 8:35–39 KJV 1900
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

A. Based on Fact, not feeling (v. 35-37)

Young Edward Mote, the author of the song, “The Solid Rock” Was not from a Christian home. Instead, he grew up as the son of a pub owner. He stated, “My Sundays were spent in the streets; so ignorant was I that I did not know that there was a God.” Yet, as a young man he was apprenticed to a cabinet maker who took him to church, where he heard the Gospel message. mote himself became a successful cabinetmaker in a London suburb and was active in his local church.
Mote wrote this hymn while he was working as a cabinetmaker. The chorus came to his mind as he was walking to work, and later in the day the stanzas came to him. The following Sunday afternoon, he visited the dying wife of a close friend. Mote didn’t know what to say to her, so he quoted the four verses of the hymn he had just written. At the end of each verse, He repeated these words: “On Christ, the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”
My Hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus Blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
On Christ, the solid rock I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand.
All other ground is sinking sand.
When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds within the veil.
His oath, His covenant, His blood Support me in the whelming flood; When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay.
When He shall come with trumpet sound, Oh, may I then in Him be found; Dressed in His righteousness alone, Faultless to stand before the throne.
When we consider hope, it must be founded in something solid in order for it to bring hope. The character of hope itself is truly revealed when the world around us seems hopeless. When all are given up for loss. Hope is the substance that we rely on through the darkest of our days, and the most intolerable of circumstances. Truly, Hope is that singular ray of sunshine that displays itself in the midst of the storm, and the salvation of light in the midst of a dark tunnel.
Hope is our greatest ally when Satan attacks, and our hope is not unfounded. God has proven he can be trusted, and his word is real. We must only turn to Him in faith.
God has called us to be Dead to self and Alive to God (v. 35-37)
2 Corinthians 4:11 KJV 1900
For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.
2 Corinthians 2:14 KJV 1900
Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.

C. Eternally Secure (v. 38-39)

1 Thessalonians 4:13 KJV 1900
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
No doubt today, we have a hope that is secure. It doesn’t matter what you may feel, or think. When we come to Christ by faith believing in his work on the cross, and the power of his resurrection, and by faith call on his name asking for forgiveness, then we see a promise from God that fills us with hope that we are forever and eternally secure in Christ.

CONCLUSION

That’s the Way I Feel About You by Nancy Jo Sullivan
by Nancy Jo Sullivan
Mote wrote this hymn while he was working as a cabinetmaker. The chorus came to his mind as he was walking to work, and later in the day the stanzas came to him. The following Sunday afternoon, he visited the dying wife of a close friend. Mote didn’t know what to say to her, so he quoted the four verses of the hymn he had just written. At the end of each verse, He repeated these words: “On Christ, the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”
One hot July morning, I awoke to the clicks of a broken fan blowing humid air across my face. The well‐used fan had seen better days. It had only one setting, and its blades were worn and bent. It needed repair. So, I thought, did my life.
My Hope is built on nothing less
One hot July morning, I awoke to the clicks of a broken fan blowing humid air across my face. The well‐used fan had seen better days. It had only one setting, and its blades were worn and bent. It needed repair. So, I thought, did my life.
Than Jesus Blood and righteousness;
Earlier that year Sarah, our Down’s syndrome daughter, had undergone heart surgery. That was behind us, but now we faced mounting medical bills that insurance wouldn’t cover. On top of that, my husband’s job would be eliminated in just weeks, and losing our home seemed inevitable.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
Earlier that year Sarah, our Down’s syndrome daughter, had undergone heart surgery. That was behind us, but now we faced mounting medical bills that insurance wouldn’t cover. On top of that, my husband’s job would be eliminated in just weeks, and losing our home seemed inevitable.
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
As I closed my eyes to try to put together a morning prayer, I felt a small hand nudge my arm. “Mommy,” Sarah said, “I g‐g‐got r‐r‐ready for v‐v‐vacation B‐B‐Bible school all by myself!”
On Christ, the solid rock I stand;
As I closed my eyes to try to put together a morning prayer, I felt a small hand nudge my arm. “Mommy,” Sarah said, “I g‐g‐got r‐r‐ready for v‐v‐vacation B‐B‐Bible school all by myself!”
All other ground is sinking sand.
Next to the bed stood five‐year‐old Sarah, her eyes twinkling through thick, pink‐framed glasses. Beaming, she turned both palms up and exclaimed, “Ta‐dah!”
All other ground is sinking sand.
Next to the bed stood five‐year‐old Sarah, her eyes twinkling through thick, pink‐framed glasses. Beaming, she turned both palms up and exclaimed, “Ta‐dah!”
When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds within the veil.
Her red‐checked, seersucker shorts were on backward, with the drawstring stuck in the side waistband. A J. C. Penney price tag hung from a new, green polka‐dot top. It was inside out. She had chosen one red and one green winter sock to go with the outfit. Her tennis shoes were on the wrong feet, and she wore a baseball cap with the visor and emblem turned backward.
His oath, His covenant, His blood Support me in the whelming flood; When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay.
Her red‐checked, seersucker shorts were on backward, with the drawstring stuck in the side waistband. A J. C. Penney price tag hung from a new, green polka‐dot top. It was inside out. She had chosen one red and one green winter sock to go with the outfit. Her tennis shoes were on the wrong feet, and she wore a baseball cap with the visor and emblem turned backward.
When He shall come with trumpet sound, Oh, may I then in Him be found; Dressed in His righteousness alone, Faultless to stand before the throne.
“I‐I‐I packed a b‐b‐backpack, t‐t‐too!” she stuttered while unzip‐ping her bag so I could see what was inside. Curious, I peered in at the treasures she had so carefully packed: five Lego blocks, an unopened box of paper clips, a fork, a naked Cabbage Patch doll, three jigsaw puzzle pieces, and a crib sheet from the linen closet.
When we consider hope, it must be founded in something solid in order for it to bring hope. The character of hope itself is truly revealed when the world around us seems hopeless. When all are given up for loss. Hope is the substance that we rely on through the darkest of our days, and the most intolerable of circumstances. Truly, Hope is that singular ray of sunshine that displays itself in the midst of the storm, and the salvation of light in the midst of a dark tunnel.
Hope is not found in man but in God.
Romans 15:13 KJV 1900
Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.

The Greeks recognized that human beings expressed hope by nature; however, this kind of hope reflects both good and bad experiences. The future was thus a projection of one’s own subjective possibilities (Bultmann, “ἐλπίς, elpis,” 2.517). Biblical hope avoids this subjectivity by being founded on something that provides a sufficient basis for confidence in its fulfillment: God and His redemptive acts as they culminate in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

We are grateful that God has used the influence of godly men to help shape and mold us, ultimately, our hope must come from God alone.
If our belief is founded in the world’s philosophy, then we must recognize the limitations of our hope is the limitations of man himself.
We were a cosmic accident after an explosion that could never have happened, from material that we do not even know how it arrived. After billions of years, the earth was formed, then cooled by rain falling on the rocks for millions of years. The remaining goop that was left on planet earth held a mystical power to have the ability for life to spontaneously generate. Through the process of time two of these two creatures somehow crawled out of this soup, and were able to recreate something that looked nothing like themselves, which process happened over and again thousands of times until you and I stand here today.
If you can believe this system of thought, which requires more faith than , you are left hopeless and without a real purpose to live for.
Ephesians 2:12 KJV 1900
That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:
1 Thessalonians 4:13 KJV 1900
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
“I‐I‐I packed a b‐b‐backpack, t‐t‐too!” she stuttered while unzip‐ping her bag so I could see what was inside. Curious, I peered in at the treasures she had so carefully packed: five Lego blocks, an unopened box of paper clips, a fork, a naked Cabbage Patch doll, three jigsaw puzzle pieces, and a crib sheet from the linen closet.
Gently lifting her chin until our eyes met, I said very slowly, “You look beautiful!”
Gently lifting her chin until our eyes met, I said very slowly, “You look beautiful!”
“Thank y‐y‐you.” Sarah smiled as she began to twirl around like a ballerina.
“Thank y‐y‐you.” Sarah smiled as she began to twirl around like a ballerina.
Just then the living room clock chimed eight, which meant I had forty‐five minutes to get Sarah, a toddler, and a baby out the door. As I hurried to feed the kids while rocking a crying infant, the morning minutes dissolved into urgent seconds. I knew I was not going to have time to change Sarah’s outfit.
Just then the living room clock chimed eight, which meant I had forty‐five minutes to get Sarah, a toddler, and a baby out the door. As I hurried to feed the kids while rocking a crying infant, the morning minutes dissolved into urgent seconds. I knew I was not going to have time to change Sarah’s outfit.
Buckling each child into a car seat, I tried to reason with Sarah. “Honey, I don’t think you’ll be needing your backpack for vacation Bible school. Why don’t you let me keep it in the car for you.”
Buckling each child into a car seat, I tried to reason with Sarah. “Honey, I don’t think you’ll be needing your backpack for vacation Bible school. Why don’t you let me keep it in the car for you.”
“No‐o‐o‐o. I n‐n‐need it!”
“No‐o‐o‐o. I n‐n‐need it!”
I finally surrendered, telling myself her self‐esteem was more important than what people might think of her knapsack full of useless stuff. When we got to church, I attempted to redo Sarah’s outfit with one hand while I held my baby in the other. But Sarah pulled away, reminding me of my early morning words, “No‐o‐o‐o . . . I l‐l‐look beautiful!” Overhearing our conversation, a young teacher joined us. “You do look beautiful!” the woman told Sarah. Then she took Sarah’s hand and said to me, “You can pick up Sarah at 11:30. We’ll take good care of her.”
I finally surrendered, telling myself her self‐esteem was more important than what people might think of her knapsack full of useless stuff. When we got to church, I attempted to redo Sarah’s outfit with one hand while I held my baby in the other. But Sarah pulled away, reminding me of my early morning words, “No‐o‐o‐o . . . I l‐l‐look beautiful!” Overhearing our conversation, a young teacher joined us. “You do look beautiful!” the woman told Sarah. Then she took Sarah’s hand and said to me, “You can pick up Sarah at 11:30. We’ll take good care of her.”
As I watched them walk away, I knew Sarah was in good hands. While Sarah was in school, I took the other two children and ran errands. As I dropped late payments into the mailbox and shopped with coupons at the grocery store, my thoughts raced with anxiety and disjointed prayer. What did the future hold? How would we provide for our three small children? Would we lose our home? Does God really care about us? I got back to the church a few minutes early. A door to the sun‐filled chapel had been propped open, and I could see the children seated inside in a semicircle listening to a Bible story.
As I watched them walk away, I knew Sarah was in good hands. While Sarah was in school, I took the other two children and ran errands. As I dropped late payments into the mailbox and shopped with coupons at the grocery store, my thoughts raced with anxiety and disjointed prayer. What did the future hold? How would we provide for our three small children? Would we lose our home? Does God really care about us? I got back to the church a few minutes early. A door to the sun‐filled chapel had been propped open, and I could see the children seated inside in a semicircle listening to a Bible story.
Sarah, sitting with her back to me, was still clutching the canvas straps that secured her backpack. Her baseball cap, shorts, and shirt were still on backwards and inside out.
Sarah, sitting with her back to me, was still clutching the canvas straps that secured her backpack. Her baseball cap, shorts, and shirt were still on backwards and inside out.
As I watched her, one simple thought came to mind: “I sure do love her.”
As I watched her, one simple thought came to mind: “I sure do love her.”
As I stood there, I heard that still, comforting voice that I have come to understand is God’s: “That’s the way I feel about you.”
As I stood there, I heard that still, comforting voice that I have come to understand is God’s: “That’s the way I feel about you.”
I closed my eyes and imagined my Creator looking at me from a distance: my life so much like Sarah’s outfit--backward, unmatched, mixed up.
I closed my eyes and imagined my Creator looking at me from a distance: my life so much like Sarah’s outfit--backward, unmatched, mixed up.
“Why are you holding that useless ‘backpack’ full of anxiety, doubt, and fear?” I could imagine God saying to me. “Let Me carry it.”
“Why are you holding that useless ‘backpack’ full of anxiety, doubt, and fear?” I could imagine God saying to me. “Let Me carry it.”
That night as I once again turned on our crippled fan, I felt a renewed sense of hope. Sarah had reminded me that God’s presence remains even when life needs repair. I might not have the answers to all my problems--but I would always be able to count on Him to help carry the load.
That night as I once again turned on our crippled fan, I felt a renewed sense of hope. Sarah had reminded me that God’s presence remains even when life needs repair. I might not have the answers to all my problems--but I would always be able to count on Him to help carry the load.
No matter where God may take us in the future, because of the Word of God, and the promises that it holds, we have a hope that endures through transitions, and problems and issues that will never Go away. Perhaps you need to let go of your anxiety and problems and issues today. I urge you to leave them at the foot of the cross, and pick up the hope that God offers to you today.
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