Life is hard, confusing, and tragic. It hurts. I often feel overwhelmed—as if I’m shoveling snow in a blizzard. As hard as I try, I can’t get a handle on it.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." This is my verse. The verse I cling to when life doesn’t make sense. I need this verse. I need to know God has a plan for my life—a good plan as He did for the nation of Israel. I need to know I have hope and a future. I need to know God has more for me.
When I’m in the middle of the unknown and awful, all I can do is hold on and hope for something better, something more, such as healing, restoration, hope, and a future.
Making sense of circumstances can be difficult. Knowing what to say to the mother whose three-year-old has cancer. Or the parents whose child is missing. Knowing how to comfort those who watch their children starve to death in corners of the world we rarely see. I search the horizon and I can’t see their hope or future.
Our fallen, broken world has trouble. This side of eternity there is illness, poverty, broken bridges, and death. Our hope frequently lies in the unseen—what waits beyond the horizon. Often, my faith—or lack thereof—boils down to believing God has plans for me as well as answering a simple question: “But what about you?” He asked. “Who do you say I am?” (Matthew 16:15).
When trouble comes and life goes sideways, I must believe God’s promises. I must trust and believe He is who He says He is. Sometimes I question and doubt. Sometimes I get mad and think God is asleep at the wheel. At other times, my doubt and unbelief leave me alone, and I wander in a painfully dry and dusty desert.
But God loves me still. When I lay down my burdens and trust Him, I get what I need—hope for my future. It’s not easy or magic. Sometimes it’s moment by painful moment.
God, your loving Father, will never leave you hopeless. His love never fails. He can restore what the locusts have eaten.
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