There have been so many times in my life where I have lost hope. This is not a unique experience if you are breathing and interacting with other people on planet Earth.
We hope for good breaks, we hope for healing in our bodies and in our relationships. Some people hope their favorite teams win a championship. But sometimes when things don't work out the way we think they should, we lose that sense of hope. The dictionary defines "hope" as a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen (noun). When our hopes come true, we feel accomplished, fulfilled, and motivated to accomplish more with hope as the central source. But when our hopes are crushed it can drastically change our lives, making us feel hopeless, meaningless, and faithless. Like failures.
I remember the day my Gynecologist told me I was infertile. It was devastating to hear that I would not likely ever have a child of my own. A gynecological condition I was born with would be the reason I would not become a mother. I remember thinking..."My mother became a mother, both of grandmothers birthed more than 15 children each...my oldest sister had three sons....how can this be?" I went for a second opinion. That Gynecologist went right to the "in-vitro" discussion. He didn't want to deal with the issue at hand...he didn't want to further the pain in my evidently broken heart. I was 24 years old when I walked out of that office and decided to try to make it happen myself. After diets, holding legs above my head after sex, changing sleeping positions and a million other home remedies for trying to hold hope for a fertilized egg to stick to my uterine wall...all of my attempts failed...failed hard!
Age 27...a friend told me she dreamed I had a son! She described him beautifully. Secretly, hope sparked.
At age 28, others came to me, separate and apart from my first friend and shared visions and dreams they had that I would have a child. One day, a Nigerian Minister who was invited to speak in our church walked up to me, looked me in the eyes then at my stomach and yelled at the top of her lungs "OPEN! MULTIPLY!" I felt something happen - not in my womb .. I felt it in my spirit...hope awakened.
At age 29, My second oldest sister called me to tell me she had become pregnant with her first child; then one of my best friends called me and shared great news - she was pregnant with her second; her sister was pregnant as well! I was filled with happiness and joy...but when would it be my turn?
Shortly thereafter, I was at work one day, and this woman who came to meet with my CEO at the time looked at me and smiled. I didn't know her, but boldly, she asked me if she could touch me. I said "sure". I did not occur to me that she would have ill intent. Something inside of me knew that nothing but good would come forth from that moment. She placed her hand on my stomach and looked me in the eyes and said "You are important to God. He has not forgotten you. And in the name of Jesus, your womb is open... God is about to give you the desire of your heart." And at that moment, Hope revived.
Finally one beautiful Sunday morning, I stood in the vestibule of the church I attended, and I cried out to God. With a broken heart, I said "Lord, just like Hannah prayed that her barren womb is opened, and she promised you that if you give her a son, she would bring that son to the house of the Lord and give him back to you. You honored her prayer; now please honor mine. I want to know what it is to be a mother. Make me the mother to a child from the fruit of my own womb." (You can read about Hannah in 1 Samuel, Chapter 1). During that morning's worship service, the Youth Pastor stood up and said that God showed him someone experiencing discomfort radiating from the lower left back, around to the front. I knew he was referring to me since I had been experiencing pain for three days in that exact location. I went to him; he placed his hand on my side and quietly prayed. Then he looked at me, and said in a loud voice "BE FRUITFUL AND MULTIPLY! (Genesis 1:28)." A friend was at the altar praying - she handed me a piece of paper, and written on that paper were the words "It is Finished." (John 19:30)
That same week we conceived. Hope Reborn... we announced a few months later, at Christmas, that I was pregnant and the greatest miracle of my life began!
The Bible tells us that "...faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for." (Hebrews 11:1-2)
Faith is the engine of Hope, and the truth about my experience is that although my faith waned for the things I hoped for, God placed people and events in my path as signs for me. His message was not to lose hope! Faithful is He to always leave a trail of breadcrumbs for me to follow, in order that I can find my way out of the forest.
Psychologists study hope and the role it plays in our lives. Its a factor in motivation for all events and personal or community expectations. More precisely, "Hope involves the will to get there, and different ways to get there. Talent, skill, ability—whatever you want to call it—will not get you there. Sure, it helps. But a wealth of psychological research over the past few decades show loud and clear that it’s the psychological vehicles that really get you there. You can have the best engine in the world, but if you can’t be bothered to drive it, you won’t get anywhere." (Psychology Today)
Hope gets you behind that wheel.
We never really think about hope outside of our use of it in believing, achieving and receiving all that we hope for, or in our loss of it as a result of the loss of expectation, or death of a dream.
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But when the desire comes, it is a tree of life." (Proverbs 13:12 NKJV). In a nutshell, when we receive what we hope for, it takes root and builds our faith in our right to believe we can receive all that we hope for! It doesn't take five Psychology degrees or 20 years on a therapy couch to figure out that Hope is motivated by faith. Hope is an essential ingredient to all things you seek to accomplish, receive, or believe.
Don't allow your heart to lose this beautiful gift borne in each of us. Nourish it in the deepest most sacred places in your heart and then deposit it into your generations! Use your faith to ignite hope every day!
This formerly "barren" woman now has three beautiful thriving children. They are My Tree of Life.
Never lose Hope my friends.
The Bible: Hebrews 11:1-2
The Bible: John 19:30
The Bible: Genesis 1:28
The Bible: 1 Samuel 1
The Bible: Proverbs 13:12 NKJV
Psychology Today 12/26/11 https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/beautiful-minds/201112/the-will-and-ways-hope