Sometime after the New Year 2015, I experienced divine discontent, that feeling which is part God-nudge, longing, and dissatisfaction.  All seemed well enough in my life, and yet something else called. 

In late February, while planning a church class, I wrote in my journal, “Start a blog.”  I hoped to create one, because my dearest friend already was writing her own. 

That spring, I saved snippets of my Sunday messages for rewrites.  That summer, I began publishing, hoping that I could reach others around the world who want to embrace their faith, grow in spiritual maturity, and navigate their life journeys with ease, grace, courage, and joy.

Hope keeps me going, driving my faith in myself, my knowledge, and my ability to keep learning and growing.  Even when my direction has seemed foggy, I trust that I’ll arrive where I need to be, when I need to be there.

Along the way, I’ve discovered that we block hope when we:

  • Attempt to order the Universe or employ the same old strategies, especially because that’s what’s always been done.
  • Say that something “should” work, though it hasn’t and still isn’t.
  • Lie or make excuses to hide the truth, whether from ourselves or others.
  • Believe the myths that we can be, do, and have it all, or that life is futile and will never get better.
  • Strive relentlessly to succeed, especially believing that we can’t rest until we complete a never-ending to do list.
  • Expect someone or something to change, especially when they show us repeatedly that they won’t.
  • Compete with and compare ourselves to others.
  • Try to do it all ourselves, because no one else can meet our standards and expectations. 
  • Live on social media and believe that’s real life.  Social media is like reality TV; much of it is staged.

In comparison, we feel and sustain hope when we:

  • Stop rehashing our problems and posting all our woes.
  • Give ourselves a reality check about what’s occurring so we can decide whether to stay, go, negotiate, adjust, or alter.
  • Trust the time we need to grow our savings, lose the weight, build the muscle, heal the wound, mend the fence, find the job, or meet our beloved. 
  • Take some action toward the goal every day, remembering that life often unfolds in small steps, rather than in grand advances.
  • Journal our progress and reflect on how far we’ve come.
  • Connect with faithful companions who encourage our dreams, celebrate our successes, and remind us of our worth.

Especially, hope is about our relationship with God.  So, we feel hope best when we see God in the midst of our lives, trusting that all things work together for good for those who love God (Romans 8:28), no matter what’s occurring.  Then, we feel renewed faith in ourselves to go forward and we feel the hope of a bright future.

During the next few months, Faith for the Journey will be updated, with additional features besides the blog.  Please stay tuned.  I hope you’ll continue the journey with me.

© 2020 – Rev. Jennifer L. Sacks – All rights reserved. — Image by invisiblepower from Pixabay.

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