It was supposed to be a routine examination and check-up, but instead, the diagnosis was the final straw that pushed me over the edge. Nothing serious was wrong but things didn’t look great and I just couldn’t deal with it. I felt like I lost all hope. I lost hope of healing. I lost hope that my body would be restored to what I know it can be. And, most devastatingly, I lost hope that my dreams of a family of my own would one day come true.
As I said, it wasn’t terminal or serious. It was just too much.
Even amid despair and fear, I had come a long way in how I deal with my emotions. I allowed myself to ugly cry and I reached out to those close to me who always try to understand.
And I prayed desperate, silent prayers. The kind of prayer where your only words between the heavy tears are “Please help me, Lord.” I had nothing more to say.
It was in the middle of this inner storm that my dear sister once again shared her favourite Bible verse with me: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
I unpacked the verse with intense study, prayer and pondering. God is good and he is the source of all our hope. He gives us hope in an eternal future and that is where our focus should be. In Matthew Henry’s commentary, he explains that “all joy and peace” translates to all sorts of true joy and peace, which suppresses doubts and fears, through the powerful working of the Holy Spirit. The ESV Study Bible tells us that “joy and peace come from trust in God, but such trust is finally a gift from God, for believers abound in hope only by grace.” When we have this hope in our eternal future and trust in the power of the Holy Spirit, we are filled with joy and peace. As a result, there is no room for doubts and fears.
I believe this is a lifelong lesson that I’m learning every single day. That is probably the main reason for these trials and all this heartache: To understand that God is ALWAYS good and that my focus should be on the eternal blessings, not the fleeting earthly desires.
But I will continue to hope that God hears my desperate cries and will help so that “I [can] remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” (Psalm 27:13)
As a musician, my life is set to music. Music carries me through days like this and helps me celebrate the good days. Here is “I have this hope” by Tenth Avenue North. Enjoy as the soundtrack to this post.
“I have this hope
In the depth of my soul
In the flood or the fire
You’re with me and You won’t let go”