Today, I'm thinking about hope. Don't you love how Christmas reminds us of all we have to be hopeful for? Recently on our local news, it was reported that someone anonymously put a coin worth over $800 into one of the Salvation Army kettles at a local Wal-Mart. Wouldn't that have been a fun surprise to discover while counting the money?!
That's hope. That's hope for so many who are struggling in this economy.
And I keep thinking about the hope we are given. Sometimes, I struggle with not feeling hopeful. Sometimes, I feel consumed by doctors and therapies and to do lists and am I doing enough. And I don't see the glimmers of hope He offers me. Sometimes, I get bogged down in seeing the contraption as a constraint...
instead of as a tool to offer us hope. She's been trying out a gait trainer recently in therapy. Will calls it a wheel chair. I am amazed sometimes at the words in his vocabulary - the medical jargon that comes so easily out of his mouth. It does resemble a wheel chair.
Next week, we're trying her in a walker. She's not ready for independent walking yet.
But we have hope.
Someday this girl will walk. It might not be in the form I once imagined. She might need assistance. But she will walk.
And we will celebrate.
We have hope.
And when I struggle, I'm reminded of Psalm 13 (Message Version)
Long enough, God— you've ignored me long enough.I've looked at the back of your head long enough. Long enough I've carried this ton of trouble, lived with a stomach full of pain. Long enough my arrogant enemies have looked down their noses at me. 3-4 Take a good look at me, God, my God; I want to look life in the eye, So no enemy can get the best of me or laugh when I fall on my face. 5-6 I've thrown myself headlong into your arms—I'm celebrating your rescue. I'm singing at the top of my lungs, I'm so full of answered prayers.
At first glance, it doesn't seem very hopeful. In fact, I can hear David screaming at God. I can hear his anguish and his pain in the accusations he hurls at God.
But those last verses? They speak hope to my heart. They remind me of a faithful God. He rescues and He answers prayers and we worship.
And isn't that what Christmas is about too?
This worshipping of God through Christmas hymns and gift giving and spending time soaking in the wonder of it all?
This week, we've celebrated our first walking party. Will walked 3 years ago this week. His therapist was over and we were practicing and then he took those first steps. Oh, how I cried. And Daddy just happened to walk in the door for lunch and was able to witness it too.
We threw a party that night.
Because it is something to celebrate when a child without feet walks.
I've learned that miracles don't always come in the form I expect. Sometimes, there is miracle where I least expect it. I think hope is kind of the same way. We want to have hope for what we want - but sometimes I think God has a bigger plan and a greater purpose. My hope is in Him - not in my children walking (though I desperately want that) or even in my children surviving. My hope is in my Savior - the One who humbled Himself to come to this earth in a dirty manger, as a babe - without riches or prestige or any measure of success. He had a common name and common parents. He was born in pain and blood and dirt.
And He died a gruesome death.
Because that is what it would take to save the people He so desperately loved.
The Jews had great hope for their Messiah. They had waited so long. And yet, this babe didn't fit into their picture of hope. This was not how they had imagined the story would end.
But in God's divine purpose, hope took the form of a baby sent to earth to save us all.
Yes, that is where I want to daily place my hope. Because His hope? His plan? It is always better than mine. Always.
(someone remind me of that when I struggle, ok?)
May you know hope today.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
And if you think of it?
We're off to Dallas in the morning again. We have multiple appointments for both kids. And some significant issues to discuss with a specialist regarding some issues that have come up recently with Sweet Will. Thank you for how you have covered us in prayer for so many years. It gives me hope.