Despair looks the same everywhere. It looks the same in rough neighborhoods, little ghost towns on the prairie, and across rural wastelands. It looks the same in developed places way past their prime and emerging places struggling to locate the first rung on the ladder. Desperation wears people down and is worn on their faces with the same numb expression. I’m sure desperate people wish things would change for the better.
Desperation overwhelms best wishes every time. But it is no match for hope, because hope has a backbone. Hopeful people stand tall and look ahead. Goals, optimism, resources, and effort are the backbone of hope. Confidence in God’s readiness to bless is hope’s sure footing and generates amazing energy to persevere. “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:31).
Hope is a gift of God and fits nicely with faith and love. It is incredibly durable. It has an excellent track record and is very contagious. People catch hope from hope-filled people who show them a way forward and prop them up a bit as they take the first steps into a better future.
I won’t wish you well. But my hope is that these few words put a little more backbone in yours.
Jason had a career as a teacher, counselor, and leader. He has written and spoken extensively on a variety of topics related to the Christian life. He has been a contributing writer for Time of Grace since 2010. He has authored Grace Moments devotions and Straight Talk Books including, Help Me, Jesus; One Day Full of Grace; and When in Doubt. Jason lives with his wife, Nancy, in Wisconsin.
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