Fighting for Hope

shesharestruth

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord! O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy!

If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? BUT with you there is forgiveness that you may be feared (revered).

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in His word I HOPE; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.

O Israel, HOPE in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love and with Him is plentiful redemption.

And He will redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

Psalm 130 (emphasis added)

Lately, I’ve often wondered if God actually hears my prayers.

I know in my head He does and His ear is turned toward my voice, but there are days and seasons when I doubt this truth in my heart. I am in one of those seasons. I cry out daily, hourly for God to answer our pleas for Him to work in our adoption and to give us guidance for where Jason’s career is headed, but I see no movement.

And how do I usually respond? With anxiety. Lots of anxiety. I forget that I serve a God who loves to bring good gifts to his children and that sometimes in order to receive those gifts, I have to walk through a season of waiting. I think God loves it when we have to wait. Not in a way that He is looking down rubbing his hands together with a sleazy smile, but as a loving Father who knows it is best for His daughter to learn and be shaped by difficult circumstances in order to become more like Christ. (Hebrews 12:7-11)

If I received everything right when I asked it, I would be spoiled and would have no idea what it means to trust God. I wouldn’t understand the Hope of Christ. I would be trusting my own abilities instead of seeing my need for God.

Last weekend, at the Storyline Conference, we heard Mike Foster speak on Living in Hope. My heart was struck by the beauty of living in Hope. My life has mainly been lived in anxiety and irrational fear. As a child I would worry about my parents’ would die in a car crash when they went on dates. In high school I worried about disappointing everyone…in the world. In college I worried about my future…would I be good enough, who I would marry, how I would make money, how I would pay off my school debt, etc. Looking at my life, I can not define it as one who lives in Hope.  I struggle to rest in hope and wait for God to move, instead I have a history of running towards whatever I can control. What I have found every time I fall into this trap that instead of finding more peace, I am more anxious and more unsettled. I long to live differently. This Psalm says that I can…

King David exclaims “HOPE IN THE LORD!!” I can see him flailing his arms saying, “No! Don’t go that way! Stay here! Stay in the waiting because it’s here that you will experience peace, never-ending love, and complete grace!”

Isn’t that what we are all seeking? Peace in our hearts. Unconditional love. Plentiful grace.

This Psalm says that we can find all of that and more. But we have to wait IN the Lord, IN His word. We have to quiet our hearts and turn away from ourselves and to Jesus. And that can be hard. Believe me. I know.

King David ends his Psalm with a promise for those who do wait and hope in the Lord. He promises that God will redeem us from all the weights and sin that hold us down. He promises freedom for the captives. Even in the midst of our sorrow or pain or confusion, God longs to enter into our mess and to hold us and say “Daughter, I am here. I hear your cries. I am working even though you can’t see it. Hold on to the hope I have given you and rest your weary heart in my strong arms while you wait to see all the Glory that will be revealed in my time.”

Does God hear my prayers? Oh yes, He does. And He hears yours too. Today, let’s thank God that He knows our needs and how to best meet them. Let’s pray that we would stop running to fix our own problems and instead hit the pause button and wait in the Lord. For with the Lord “there is steadfast love and plentiful redemption”.

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Comments

  1. This was so encouraging to me. Patience has been such a good thing that the Lord has been trying to speak into my life lately, but being as impatient as I am, I have been ignoring it. And as a result of that ignorance, I grow fearful — especially about the uncertainty of the future! Thank you for allowing me to see the hope that is also found in this chapter 🙂

  2. Great post! I can picture David too saying, HOPE IN THE LORD! I hope it too many things that are not of Him. Thank you for sharing your heart!

  3. Sarah, this is SO good. I totally hear you on the adoption anxiety + worry. It can be hard to give up control (as if we had any, anyway!) and trust Him, but it is so worth it.

  4. Rachel F. says:

    Amen! Love you and your heart for truth. Praying against the enemy in this specific season. Keep fighting!!

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