Yes it’s been a long time since I’ve written.  Yes it might be a long time until I write again.  I’m setting very few goals for myself these days and trying to keep things realistic- I’m all about positive reinforcement.

So I was thinking today about hope.  What it means, what it doesn’t mean, how you get it, how you keep it.  I’m walking through a hard time right now- some of you know the specifics- some of you don’t.  Not that I would mind sharing it with any of you, but for now, sometimes b/c of life, time, energy and distance I don’t talk to all of you as much as I’d like.  But someone I barely know showed me a very simple small kindness today and it gave me great hope.  So I started wondering- what is hope?  Can you make yourself have it?  Can you give it to someone else?  The hope I’ve held onto the last few weeks is from Psalm 56:9:
                                     This I know, God is for me.

I go through it and I put the emphasis on each word…THIS I know, God is for me.  This I know God IS for me… and so on.  It’s only 7 words, but they make ALL the difference in the world.

There are many uncertainties in my life right now, and although I have walked through a time in the past where I had many doubts and even a crisis of faith of sorts, that’s not my struggle right now and I am thankful for that.  But most days,  I don’t see the big picture- can’t see farther down the road b/c I’m having to keep my eyes on the steps right in front of me.  I do KNOW that God is for me.  I trust that in a general/overall sort of way.  It’s the daily hope that I sometimes struggle with.  So as I was running today I thought I’d ask for some “hopeful” thoughts.

 Since I started this post about running, coffee, cupcakes and faith- I had to give up running for a while, had to give up eating most things- including cupcakes, and I am seriously considering fasting from coffee for a month.  Honestly, I’m not sure I can do it- I feel like it’s my last little “thing”- my vice or treat- whatever you want to call it- but the point is even if I give up all those things, I still am left with my faith- which gives me hope each day.  Even though I still struggle with how that looks in my daily life.

So- here’s my question: What gives you hope?  And I mean specifically- not in general.  What do you think about, focus on, concentrate on, tell yourself, believe when you are feeling hope-less?  What has gotten you through the hard times?  My guess is that everyone reading this has been through things that make it hard to hang on to hope, or are going through them now, or I’m sorry to say- will go through them in the future.  So maybe your words here to me will help others and people you don’t even know.  But for now I’m being selfish and asking for myself- what gives you hope?  I “hope” you’ll share it with me 🙂

10 thoughts on “Hope

  1. amber February 5, 2011 / 4:30 pm

    oh, dawn, i love you. i am not sure what is going on.i am terrible about keeping in touch. i think i don't have enough time and am too busy…..but as you having been talking about changing priorities…that is what i am slowly trying to work on so that change/new habits can stick. so saying that, what brings me hope is: There HAS to be MORE…meaning a deeper purpose, that feeling from within that you are making a difference even if the only one that sees it is God. hope is also the light in my children's eyes and expressions on their faces. hope is that lightbulb in my head that sometimes clicks in that my actions can affect others and to think wisely (God does move through me if allowed). hope to me is a beautiful day and limitless possibilities, my heart gets emotional, excited, hopeful…when i know i may be helping someone else reach a goal, share a special moment, live life with emotion…i do hope this is not pure rambling. know this: i love you, i think about you, i cherish you, i am encouraged by you…..you over the years have given me hope. love, amber

  2. Benjamin Button February 5, 2011 / 7:42 pm

    When I begin to think that God won't act because of this reason or that reason; when people tell me "Oh, God doesn't work like that…."; when I think I have it all figured out how a thing will turn out, that's when I remember Psalm 115:3. Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him. Psalm 115:3Our knowledge of God is so small, you can literally say "we know nothing of God." And yet, deep inside, we do know him. We just can't put him in a box and tell him what to do; can't turn him on and off like the TV. THAT gives me great hope—the mystery of God. He is ALWAYS up to something. I don't really want to know the details of what he is up to. I'd misinterpret it I were looking at his flow chart. HOPE is that mystery. I am still confident of this:I will see the goodness of the LORDin the land of the living Psalms 27:13Do not give up coffee. I'm quite certain that is not part of God's plan: )Benjamin Button

  3. Alice February 5, 2011 / 8:12 pm

    FROM THE FATHER'S HEARTMy child, if you never had any tunnels to go through, and if you never experienced despair, why would you need hope? I have a purpose in everything, even suffering. Sometimes that purpose is to show you that I am your only hope of glory. I'm the only One who knows the intricate mysteries of life. And I choose to pour out those riches to you, My child, because you are in Christ. In darkness or in light, I will always be that hope for you. A GRATEFUL RESPONSEWhen hope is only a dot on the horizon, You flood my life with showers of encouragement. My hope is in You, Lord: You are my destination; You are my consolation; You are my celebration. You are Christ in me, my hope of glory. SIMPLE TRUTH Hope is a paint drop of color in an ordinary day. from: Daily in Your Presence, with Rebecca Barlow Jordan at CrossWalk.comDawn,The bible says "All things work together for good" and I sometimes say ….Who's Good Lord?… I'm just not seeing it right now. But, I do know that HE is my caretaker, my only hope. I have to trust and hope in HIM because I am worthless without HIM. Good for nothing without hope in Him. I love you Dawn, and you are always in my daily prayers. You are my extended family and I praise and thank God for you. I so enjoy your blog. Keep ‘em coming!

  4. rebecca February 5, 2011 / 8:25 pm

    Hope….I think you already know my thoughts on this…but if I think about it, I think this is how I'd put it in words:I feel like in my life things have happened for a reason, even if I don't know what that reason is at the time. That gives me hope each time something tries to knock me down. I think about that and really take it to heart.More specifically- I find that when I don't feel hopeful, talking to people who have gone through something similar and come through helps me. I find hope in my friends and family who remind me of my own strength, the things I've gotten through in the past, and who share their own challenges and resilience. This is a stage in our lives. It will change us, and maybe completely change our course…..but we will get through it. We just have to keep riding the ride, and we will make it to the other side. Take it day by day, and continue to rely on friends, family, and faith. In an entire lifetime, looking back on this….and any obstacle, will hopefully look like a "blip."Hope is part of who you are. Even if it only feels like a small part right now, it's in your heart and soul. You are a hopeful person. I love you!

  5. Alice February 6, 2011 / 1:21 am

    I am not skilled to understandWhat God has willed, what God has plannedI only know at His right handStands one who is my Savior I take Him at His word and deedChrist died to save me; this I readAnd in my heart I find a needOf Him to be my saviorThat He would leave His place on highAnd come for sinful man to dieYou count it strange, so once did IBefore I knew my Savior Chorus (2x’s) My Savior loves, My Savior livesMy Savior’s always there for meMy God: He was, my God; He isMy God is always gonna beYes, living, dying, let me bringMy strength, my solace from this spring;That He who lives to be my KingOnce died to be my SaviorThat He would leave His place on highAnd come for sinful man to dieYou count it strange, so once did IBefore I knew my SaviorAaron Shust: My Savior My God

  6. mandy February 6, 2011 / 1:58 am

    I love that Aaron Shust song and absolutely the truths of scripture in music always bring me hope. I'm grateful that we've had the chance to talk about this recently, but my hope comes from the knowledge that we serve and love and are loved by a Sovereign God who knows all things, redeems all things, and from whom we cannot escape or make a choice out of His perfect will….Sam is crying so I'm going to get him. My relationships give me hope, too! Especially my friendship with you!

  7. Dawn February 6, 2011 / 2:44 am

    See? I KNEW you guys would help me! I love all of this and it is so so helpful. LOVE that Aaraon Shust song…love to be reminded of all the people that have helped me through and continue to help me through….am so encouraged by others who struggle but remain confident that there IS a purpose and reason…..am humbled to be reminded of many of those verses. Thanks guys for sharing with me! I am thankful, and a little more hopeful today.

  8. themccann5 February 6, 2011 / 12:41 pm

    I don't really have any good answer to this question. I just think, if you dont have hope, what else is there?? I mean really, without hope, I'm not sure I'd make it through each day-hope that my day WILL get better, hope that my kids WILL eventually go to sleep and I'll have two minutes to myself, hope that one day I will not have to change any more dirty diapers! ;). Seriously though, you know hope has been my "theme" this year and my verse: "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." Romans 12:12- I think that verse kind of summarizes it all, and is what I remind myself of on those days I am feeling hopeless.

  9. julie February 6, 2011 / 5:50 pm

    This is my prayer in the desertAnd all that's within me feels dryThis is my prayer in the hunger in meMy God is a God who providesAnd this is my prayer in the fireIn weakness or trial or painThere is a faith provedOf more worth than goldSo refine me Lord through the flamesAnd I will bring praiseI will bring praiseNo weapon forged against me shall remainI will rejoiceI will declareGod is my victory and He is hereAnd this is my prayer in the battleAnd triumph is still on it's wayI am a conqueror and co-heir with ChristSo firm on His promise I'll standAll of my lifeIn every seasonYou are still GodI have a reason to singI have a reason to worshipThis is my prayer in the harvestWhen favor and providence flowI know I'm filled to be empited againThe seed I've recieved I will sowThis song is the Desert Song by Hillsong and it is the song that God always brings to my head when I am feeling like I have no hope. I am praying for you Dawn and I am hopeful that He will speak to you through this song too. You were the one in Iraq that would always give me sweet words of wisdom when I had no hope . God spoke to me through you during that time of no hope and I will always be grateful for your friendship. I do not know what you are going through right now but I do know…in all of my life in every season You are still God I have a reason to sing I have a reason to worship!! Love and miss you! Julie

  10. Dawn February 18, 2011 / 7:19 pm

    Julie- humbled by your words and a reminder that God can use us even when we have no idea he's doing it, b/c the thought that I could be anythign positive to anyone during that dark time of deployment is almost unbeliveable to me- but I know you so I'll believe you 🙂 thanks for sharing!Thanks everyone for the shared hope-full thoughts. I've read them many times and treasure the little glimpses into everyone's thoughts and hearts.

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