1. a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.
2. grounds for believing that something good may happen.
Do you remember the JC Penny catalog? Its thin, glossy, product-filled pages graced mailboxes across the United States from 1963-2009.
Luckily I was born in 1970, during the glory days of this thick, glorious catalog. It would arrive a couple of months before Christmas and I would scan its pages over and over and over, looking for the perfect Christmas gift.
Not for my siblings or parents. For myself, of course.
And one year, I found it. The most perfect of all perfect gifts – a wooden dining table and chairs, sized for Barbie dolls. It came with pewter plates and silverware too. I wanted it so bad. So did my Barbies – though they couldn’t speak, I could just sense it. Me and my plastic dolls knew the hours of entertainment the dining set would provide. I would never need any other gift again in the history of Christmas.
I must have looked at that dining table photo hundreds of times, hoping it would be under the tree on Christmas morning.
It adds excitement and adventure to our lives. It moves us forward. It keeps us believing. It gives us the courage to take steps that would otherwise seem impossible or unbearable. Believing that something good could happen makes the future so bright.
Jeffrey R. Holland said, “We all need to believe that what we desire in righteousness can someday, some way, somehow yet be ours.”
I’ve hoped for many things in my life. Some hopes have been realized. Others have been denied.
I’ve come to know this truth – God wants us to be happy. Often what we hope for is the very thing that will make us happy – so God magnificently orchestrates on our behalf. And sometimes, God has to tell us “no” so He can lead us to a better “yes” that will make us happier than we would have been if we had gotten what we originally hoped for.
The first verse of “At the Same Time” says:
I didn’t see this coming
No way I could have known
Life has sent me on a detour
And I don’t recognize this road
God leads us down unfamiliar roads so He can pave the way to joy. It isn’t always easy to see that that’s what He is doing. It can actually make us feel abandoned, forgotten and even unloved.
But it is quite the opposite. There is something so divine, when pain and grace collide.
God loves us enough to say yes when yes is best and no when no is best. We can put our full and complete hope and trust in Him because He has our best interest in the forefront of His mind. Yes, the God of the universe is thinking about you…and me. He knows us perfectly and He knows which gifts we will love, use and treasure the most.
He is worth putting our hope in. Today, I invite you to consider a way that you could put your hope in Him.
And just in case you are wondering, the dining room set was under the tree that Christmas. It made me enormously happy for years.
Blog to you soon,
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