Hope.

In the last 3 months, I have had countless women in my life share with me, my family, and with other loved ones, their joy of a baby on the way or a baby that has recently arrived. I have watched women I grew up with go from wife to mother. I have watched one of my dearest friends celebrate among the people she loves (our church), as she finally shared the long awaited news that yes, God’s perfect timing was saying now. And of course, I have watched my sister Jenn go from frustrated to anxious to nervous to excited to over-the-moon and back again, all because God has given her and Michael the go ahead as well. These many women have been a consistent example of the tenacious relationship we all have with hope. We refuse to let go, because sometimes, that hope is all we have left.

Not surprisingly, hope has been the overriding theme in my life of late. Five weeks from the completion of my RN education, I am most definitely at the point of “enough is enough!” I have done my time in the classroom and on the clinical site, I have logged my hours in front of my computer, and I have lost the countless hours of sleep that this program requires of it’s students. At times, I have felt like I have nothing left to give, that quite literally there is nothing left of the woman I was two years ago! Perched on the cusp of “next” and knowing the sacrifices these years have asked of me, I can’t help but wonder if it will all be worth it.

Fortunately, hope, my hope, always kicks in. Always. Does it wax and wane? Absolutely. Have there been days, even weeks, where I’ve wondered if it would ever work out, if it would ever be over, if God would ever say yes? Of course! Do I wonder, even now, if any of the choices I’ve made are good ones? Everyday. But I also believe in a God who has literally woven his message of hope all over the Bible, the same God who has kept the hope alive in my sister’s family and all of the other families I mentioned above.

Joshua 1:9 states, “This is my command- be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord you God is with you wherever you go.”

Jeremiah 29:11 states, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Psalms 16:8 states,”I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”

I’m pretty sure that there is one way to interpret these promises (and the hundreds of other that I didn’t include). God wants to bless us. He promises to bless us.  So we trust. We believe in His perfect timing, we put one foot in front of the other, we recognize that our lives are not our own, and we move forward.

I can guarantee that I will continue to wonder how the heck I got here, or where the heck I’m going next. But I dare you to try to take my hope from me.

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