Today’s Scripture Reading: Lamentations 2:1 through Lamentations 4:22
Hope is a powerful force. When you have hope you can do the physically and mentally impossible, but when hope is gone you turn into an emotionless shell that just exists.
Most of my life I’ve been a person full of hope. I love to plan and think about the future. I’ve never spend a lot of time on the past; I’d rather dream about things to come.
In a few
DARK and DESPERATE TIMES
When hope was lost
When everything I had dreamed about and everything I thought I was supposed to be, was gone, seemingly forever. In these times I knew what Solomon meant when he said in Proverbs 13:12 that hope deferred makes the heart sick.
Jeremiah knew how I felt and he knew how you feel:
I cry out, “My splendor is gone! Everything I had hoped for from the Lord is lost!” The thought of my suffering and homelessness is bitter beyond words. I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss. –Lamentations 3:18-20
When we reach a place in life where we don’t expect or believe things will get any better…
What do we do?
We do what Jeremiah did; we talk to ourselves.
“Self-talk” is a term psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, coaches and trainers use every day. Just like most successful life skills, self-talk originated in the Bible.
Self-Talk is our internal dialogue, our thoughts. It is those thoughts, positive or negative, that end up shaping our lives, and results in the decisions we make, personally, professionally and spiritually.
The most important voice we will ever hear other than the voice of God is our own voice. What we say to ourselves will either cause us to rise above life’s trials and tribulations or fall beneath the weight of them.
Jeremiah spent 20 verses venting, complaining, and laying his feelings on the table; then in verse 21 he grabbed himself by the collar, actually they didn’t have collars then , and used one of the great eraser words--
Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” The Lord is good to those who depend on him to those who search for him. So it is good to wait quietly for salvation from the Lord. –Lamentations 3:21-26 (emphasis mine)
Friends, we need to fight like Jeremiah to preserve our hope. When everyone says there’s no hope, we must say to ourselves, “No matter what the circumstances look like, I will hope in God!” This is one of the few things in life that no one can take away from us, but we can give it away, if we’re not careful.
In Psalms 42 and 43, David said to himself three times:
Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad?
I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again—my Savior and my God!
Heavenly Father, help us to grasp the importance of our thoughts and our words. Help us to daily work with You and not against You as we think and speak. Holy Spirit, show us the thoughts and words that aren’t pleasing to You. Teach us how use the weapon of self-talk to win the battle for our hope.
In Jesus’ Name. Amen and Amen!
© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:Lamentations 5:1-22; Obadiah 1:1-21; 2 Kings 25:22-26; Jeremiah 40:7 through Jeremiah 41:18