Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Hope Does Not Disappoint

For those of you are Christians...  do you feel "saved" most days, or do you go through seasons where you just believe but don't really "feel" anything?  I've been stuck in a terribly dry season for a while now.  Don't get me wrong.  I love Jesus, but emotionally, I've been leaning towards empty.  I've been journeying through a spiritual desert while I have seen God working all around me.  It's an odd place to be.  It makes me think about the Israelites as God led them to the Promised Land.  They walked through the most desolate of places but all the while experienced miracles like never before.  I'm there.

I know I have shared about this before, but when I was pregnant with Pax, I really felt anything but pregnant.  I just felt miserable most of the time and sometimes scared.  The frequent gallbladder attacks were maddening to my Type A personality, because I couldn't be productive most days.  I could only endure.  I often fought against guilt, because we had wanted this baby so badly.  When I couldn't take living in the moment anymore, I would live for the delivery day.  I imagined what it would be like to hold a healthy baby boy.  That hope is what kept me going.  In the end, that hope didn't disappoint.  Having Pax with us now has been the greatest joy.  I can't thank God enough for this precious gift.  My heart is so full.

Transition to today.  I'm not feeling too spiritual.  My quiet times are completely random as I adjust to life with two sweet kids on not enough sleep.  I've been out of church more than in church in the past few months for reasons I couldn't control.  All of that adds up and contributes to this season.  I am just not on a spiritual mountaintop.  It's more like a valley.  I'm guessing I am not alone.  I think it is safe to assume that some of you feel this way now or have been here before.

What keeps me going?  Hope.  Hope in what is to come.  Right now, in the trenches of life, heaven seems so far away.  A place where we will become all we are supposed to be as believers.  A place where sin's sting will be no more.  No more suffering.  No more crying.  No more death.  A place where Jesus will fill our hearts with a joy that will never end, and we will find rest in His arms.  It seems far away, but it's not.

When life becomes too much or when the Enemy accuses you and condemns you again and again, focus on heaven brothers and sisters.  Imagine the joy we will have when we see Jesus face to face.  Drink it in.  Taste it.  Let it wash over you.  As believers, we have no reason to be ashamed or discouraged- we have been rescued. With the joy set before us, let's endure our cross and finish this race well.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, l
ooking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:1-2

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