Mothers for Prodigals

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Holding onto HOPE

We all have our routines; we know the drill. Morning, noon, and night we live, work, and play everyday until it becomes commonplace. Sometimes things go smoothly, sometimes the days are rough. But over all, our lives habitually progress through time with little change interruption occurs, an intrusion that seems to put a halt on a typical day. 

The phone rings and your sister relays news that your father is in intensive care in the hospital, and she adds, “You better hurry.” Or a brother calls saying your mom fell and broke her hip. Or a family member informs you that your sister-in-law has cancer. Or you look out the window and see your son falling from a tree, cutting his leg open on the way down. Or your daughter-in-law calls, letting you know that your granddaughter had a seizure at school. Or your dad comes home from work early because his boss fired him. Or your adult child calls you with fear in her voice because her husband threatened to commit suicide. Or a hurricane blows through your area, destroying your house and everything you owned. Or your husband serves you with divorce papers after thirty years of marriage. Or you’re suddenly faced with the outcome of a choice you’ve made and you worry it will forever define you. 

What do you do when grief barges into your normal life? Where do you go when bad news knocks at your door? How do you react when tragedy enters your everyday routine? 

That phone call, that bad news usually sends shock through us. Everything seems to stop. We forget what we’re doing at the moment and focus solely on the news at hand. We get a sick feeling in the pit of our stomachs. Fear begins to rise up in us and over us as if everything just got dark. Our palms get sweaty and our hands begin to shake. Breathing intensifies and our heart rate goes up. Stress overtakes us and tears begin to fall as we begin to panic. Worry sets in and we can’t even remember our normal life before the news. Our worst fear has been realized and we are at a loss as to how to move forward. 

Why do we allow bad things to take us directly to stress instead of straight to God? Why do we almost fall to our knees in pain, hopelessly filled with heartache? We sense that our life is out of control and we don’t know where to turn. We’re confused, worried, and full of fear. 

Jesus tells us in Scripture not to worry and fear. Do we listen? If not, why not? Jesus is the Word of God that gives us hope (John 1:1-5). Why don’t we rely on Him? He is part of the Godhead that created this universe. He is the Sovereign Lord over everything. We should run to Him when things are out of our control instead of losing control of our own senses. If we believe in the God of the universe, why do we not believe in His power? Instead of falling to our knees in pain and helplessness, why don’t we fall on our knees in awe of the One who is our help? Why don’t we immediately turn to Him instead of fear and worry? Does fear and worry help us? No, they only cause us to fret, cry, wring our hands with nervousness, and lose hope. So if we need help, where do we go? Scripture tells us in Psalm 121. 

I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
He will not allow your foot to slip;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
Will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun will not smite you by day,
Nor the moon by night. 
The Lord will protect you from all evil;
He will keep your soul.
The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in
From this time forth and forever.

Our situations may not change, they may even get worse. But God is our help. He gives us strength to cope with our circumstances. He comes alongside us and says, “I love you. Those things that concern you, concern Me. I understand and I care. I am here for you.” Do you believe Him? Read the words of David and trust that God cares for you.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me;
You will stretch forth Your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
And Your right hand will save me.
The Lord will accomplish what concerns me;
Your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting;
Do not forsake the works of Your hands.
Psalm 138:7-8 (NASB)

Instead of falling on our knees in pain, let’s humbly fall to our knees in prayer to God, our Creator and our Savior. Instead of worrying, stressing, fearing, or trying to fix things when faced with trouble, let’s go straight to God in prayer and tell Him our situations and how we feel. He is waiting for us to talk to Him, and He desires to help us. In His Word He offers strength, peace, and joy to those who ask and He is faithful to do it. He is a man of His Word and on Him we place our hope. Read, believe, and trust in the God who loves you.

He said, “The things that are impossible with people are possible with God.” Luke 18:2 (NASB)
These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full. John 15:11 (NASB)
Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10 (NASB)
Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. John 14:27 (NASB)
God speaks through Scripture; hear and believe Him. Others that have experienced God give us their testimony to God’s power in personal quotes below. 
“We need more Christians for whom prayer is the first resort, not the last.”  ---John Blanchard

“Complete weakness and dependence will always be the occasion for the Spirit of God to manifest His power.” ---Oswald Chambers

Don’t give up on the situation that surrounds you and don’t give in to worry and fear. Trust Jesus with your life because He cares for you. Turn to Him in prayer, holding onto Him and the hope He offers to you!

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7 (NASB)

Be strong and let your heart take courage, All you who hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24 (NASB)
We have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers. 1 Timothy 4:10 (NASB)

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