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Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Restoration of Hope

Dear Beloved,

Has your hope taken a hit? Maybe you don't feel completely hopeless, but you sense in your heart there are some areas where you're wondering: can God really do this? If so, you're not alone. The past month has been extremely hard for me. There was a lot of heaviness and sadness and it wasn't until last night that I realized part of my sadness was because my hope had taken a hit in a few areas. I still believe God to be God, but in my subconscious, I've been thinking can He really move over these things or are they just what they are? 

I found myself thinking about the generations of black slaves in America. If there was any group of people that knew about great trials and tribulations it was them. I said, "God, HOW did they hope? HOW did they keep going?" For the first generation of slaves, the end of slavery would be hundreds of years away, yet they still had a desire to marry and have children, and even smile once those children were born. How can a people still desire these things, when it seems like life would never get better? Everything was dark around them, yet they continued to bring life to: children, traditions, teachings, and so much more. 

A day or two after asking God this question, I came across a tweet by Jackie Hill Perry that said: 

"Negro spirituals are the perfect soundtrack for our times.
They, unlike the hymns written by white Christians, had lyrics born out
of deep suffering.To sing as they did was to put their pain into song while
reminding each other of a man named Jesus who would soon take them home."

There was God's answer to me: They worshiped. So, then I went to look up these spiritual songs, which I've only heard in passing. In my search, I found a song called Go Down Moses, where the lyrics speak to the children of Israel being enslaved in Egypt and Moses telling Pharaoh to let the people go. We see this account in the Bible. So, in singing this song, the black people that were enslaved, reflected on how God used Moses to free the children of Israel from their slavery. They found hope in what God did before and believed He could do it again. I found another song called Hold On, that speaks to holding onto the plow (a farming tool). This is a reference to a scripture in the Bible where Jesus tells us no one who holds the plow and keeps looking back is fit for the kingdom of God. Essentially, looking back is representative of taking your hand off the plow. The plow represents the mission in life God has for us. The black Americans that were enslaved remembered to hold on and that God still had purpose for them and we see it in the generations they birthed, the traditions they passed down, the teachings of hope, and the wealth of songs rooted in God's word. 

Each week I write to you testifying about God's hope through His word, but it seems in the past month I was thinking maybe there was something else that helped these mighty people in history. I was blessed when I saw they found hope in the very thing that's been giving me hope since I got saved in 2012. After this, I went to the Bible in 1 Thessalonians 5:8, which says, But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. Salvation means to save, even deeper God saves. My hope ought to be rooted in the fact that GOD SAVES. Not only can He save me from my sin (which is the greatest miracle of all), but He can save the other areas I was questioning from before. God Saves, period. 

This was refreshing to see that my hope comes from the basis of my salvation. If God can save me, He can save or redeem anything. Now that I'm reminded of that, I have to deal with the areas of hope in me that took a hit. Hope isn't something I can go to the store and buy, but it belongs to God and is a gift from God. With that, I need God to restore my hope in the areas it's taken a hit, that means prayer. So last night I started to do that, I named the areas God revealed to me where my hope weakened and I began praying for Him to restore. I encourage you to do the same. If your hope has taken a hit, pray for God to replace the hope that was lost. It doesn't mean you're evil or you've lost your faith. Sometimes in life we take a hit, or a couple of hits and God is there waiting for our prayer of restoration. The Lord is with you beloved and He can restore our hope. 

May your hope be in Jesus Christ,


Tell me how this Hope Letter helped you in the comments below!

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  1. Wow, Amen! Thank you for sharing this word. I am a musician and I have sung "Hold On" in choirs for years but I never thought about the reference to the scripture where Jesus talks about those who choose to keep looking back. That is so encouraging to me because I tend to keep looking back even when I don't mean to. Today I started to lose hope a little bit and I cried a little bit. But you reminded me through the Word that the kingdom of God is not behind us, so we can't keep looking that way! I definitely needed this Hope Letter today because I don't feel completely hopeless, but sometimes I do find myself wondering if God really will cover my brokenness and hopeless areas. And I felt bad for questioning because I don't want to doubt God. But like you said, it isn't doesn't mean I'm evil or that I've lost my faith. Thank you for this reminder. I will definitely listen to spirituals in a new way because they truly do glorify God's saving power in the midst of suffering. As always, be blessed sister! <3

    1. Hey Imani! Wow, look at God making the connection for you, that's so powerful! Praise God for you finding hope through this Hope Letter. I pray every area of hope that has taken a hit will be restored in Jesus name!