It was like a nightmare and horror movie all rolled into one. It felt like slow motion. I’m desperately climbing out of a dark pit toward the light. I get just to the top and as I claw my way to dry ground, a hand grabs my ankle and tries to pull me back into the mire. I cry out to Jesus, who reaches His hand to me, and as He is pulling me out I kick free with my other foot and am able to climb free from the pit of despair.
I just don’t get it. I know better, and I have no one to blame but myself. But hopefully this is changing.
I’m sure we all have one in our lives, a Negative Nancy. A person who speaks gloom, doom, and despair into our day. They are unable or unwilling to see anything positive and feel the need to drag you down into their misery. (Misery loves company I’ve heard.)
Some days are easier to shut it out, other days, not so much. It takes awareness, effort, and discipline to stay focused on our only hope, Jesus.
I knew it was time to write this post, as this morning in my devotion the Romans 15:13 verse popped up again. (See Coincindence https://godstillspeakstoday.com/2020/11/08/coincidence/)
“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.” [NIV]
God keeps gently nudging me with this same message to bring me back to hope. My gift is encouragement and it dawned on me I need to encourage myself, as I attempt to do for you through these posts.
Each day I am going to strive to not let the hurt and pain of the negative burn away my hope, nor lose my enthusiastic delight in God. That fire hurts. Instead I’m going to be a Phoenix, a long lived bird in Greek mythology that is born again. It obtains new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor. I’m not going to be afraid of the fire.
“Some women fear the fire, some women simply become it.” (r.H. Sin on Instagram)
I’m going to choose to live my life with my hope ignited and live in beauty and not fear.
“To all who mourn he will give beauty for ashes; joy instead of mourning; praise instead of heaviness.” (Isa. 61:3 [TLB])
The footnote for this verse in The Passion Translation states, “ The Hebrew for beauty is phe’er and the word for ashes is epher—simply by the moving of one letter shows that God has the power to change and move things around in our lives to make them into something beautiful.”
“The Lord alone is our radiant hope and we trust in him with all our hearts. His wrap-around presence will strengthen us. As we trust, we rejoice with an uncontained joy flowing from Yahweh!” (Ps. 33:20-21 [TPT])
So when I ignore Negative Nancy and focus only on Jesus, I can go from hopefully to hope fully!
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