There’s a common occurrence in my life. I am driving home, and I get tired of wearing my jewelry. I put it in the center console of my car somewhere, or inside the pocket of my purse. Or I go to the gym and I shove my jewelry down in between my clothes or in a small pocket. Or I go on a trip and I shove a pair of earrings, a hair tie, a bracelet, in a random little pocket. I don’t find these little things until sometimes weeks or months later, usually when I am not looking for them. If I had put them in the place where they belong, then I wouldn’t have ever had trouble finding them when I needed them to go with a particular outfit.
This is like what we do with faith and hope sometimes. We stick in the most random of places and then can’t find it when we need it.
I found myself one day a couple of weeks ago feeling completely hopeless about more than one situation in my life. This feeling came after having my hopes up for something and seeing them dashed. However, how could something as seemingly trivial as this, cause me to feel such utter hopelessness about practically everything in my life? It felt like it came on all of a sudden. Out of nowhere. But did it really? No. These intense emotions never just come out of nowhere. There’s a root to it.
Then, I realized. I just stuck my hope in some random places. I laid it down a little at a time. Here and there. In the moment when someone made a negative comment to me, I dropped off a little hope. In the moment when I was rejected by someone I wanted to like me, I set down a little hope. In the moment when I tried really hard at something, and failed, I put down a little hope. In the moment that I had high expectation and anticipation and a friend let me down, I dropped off a little more hope. Here and there, my hope tank had run dry.
The feeling of hopelessness and despair can creep up on us like a little villain waiting to pounce, but he doesn’t have to. No, we can stop and find our hope again, and find it fast! Dig the earrings out of the pocket. Pull the bracelet out of the bag. Find the necklace in the bottom of the car, or the corner of the kitchen.
A very strong analogy for a very foundational principle in life. Hope is a choice. It’s something that we have to choose daily.
Hope is also very easily lost when it’s placed in people and circumstances that we can’t control. What we have to do is go back to the hope that is on the inside. When that friend lets us down this hope shouts out, “I’ve got something better for you. ” When we fail at something this hope cries out, “You can still do it.” When we are rejected this hope calls out, “You are accepted and loved, and will never be alone.” When we are feeling bad about ourselves this hope declares, “You’ve got what it takes to make it.”
There is One named Jesus Christ who gave himself up so that we can hold on to our hope.
4 Keys to Jolt You Out of Hopelessness:
- Think of the times when you dropped off your hope in one area of your life..i.e. hoping for a new job, hoping for a relationship, hoping for a promotion, hoping for a good review at work, etc. Write down some of those situations where you started thinking negative thoughts about yourself or about God.
- Replace each negative memory with a positive thought. Ask the Lord to show you what He sees and was trying to say to you in those moments. Write down what you hear in your heart, or see in a picture that He shows you. OR Look up Scriptures on whatever you want to feel instead- joy, peace, inspiration, etc. Write those down. These are positive declarations to jolt your brain to think in line with the Truth.
- Write a list of thank you’s. What can you celebrate?
- Go do something to celebrate what you do have. Eat a cookie, go to a special dinner place, buy yourself a gift, have a little dance party, belt out your favorite song!
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.Romans 15:13 NIV
Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.Psalm 42:5 NIV