Looking for Hope in all the wrong places…?

Feeling down lately ? Just weary of all the recent despair and disaster news, looking…longing for some good, uplifting and encouraging news to re-energize your day? Are you looking for Hope in all the wrong places ?

This morning on my way to work I heard on Fox News and MSN about a mother in the New York area who drove her mini-van with three of her four kids intentionally into the Hudson River and drowned them all.

The sadness, the madness, the absolute desperation of life to bring her to take such an act over any other option… brought me to tears. I considered numbly… how much despair and hopelessness must have been relentlessly building up in her until she having found no other solution, chose death over life.

Millions struggle from a lack of hope, and desperately try to find it where-ever they can. Some believe in the vision of our government, or in the value of the stock market or in personal relationships, careers or even their body size. They anxiously look forward to a better day, a brighter future the elusive end of the rainbow is the grand vision of their lives… but if that hope ever really, seriously fades.., it gets dark and fast.

When we truly lose our belief in a happier tomorrow, what then? Who or where can we turn to for Hope? Its clear this tragic young mother “Felt” she had no one or nothing to live for and she assumed her kids future would be as bleak as her own. As an extreme act, her behavior is likely linked to her mental and chemical health and a hundred other things, but it serves to illustrates the point.

The need for Hope is greater than ever… and for those of us who still cling to it, we need to share it. Freely and regularly with those in need, its only in the sharing that HOPE grows…

The irony is… in the midst of taking the time to look and help and love those who are fading in our own back yards… we actually regain our own personal hope and purpose and spark for life. So in serving others we are refreshed, in giving of ourselves… we are blessed and in the outward gaze of our eye we forget the pain and worry and sadness that looms over us and we replace its darkness with the light of genuine life and love and HOPE.

Jesus knew that well.. He taught his disciples (the twelve with him in Galilee and now all who take His name as their own) to live this way. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, 27and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, 28even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:26-28 ESV) – courtesy of Biblegateway.com

So, my encouragement to myself and to you is this… look around you( brad)…What about the single parent waitress with two jobs and no sleep ? Or maybe the dad who can’t seem to find enough time to work and eat and pay the mortgage, let alone love his family ? or the Pastor or fellow parent who always volunteers and never gets a break for themselves, or the lonely in your world who just never seem to find a friend ?

CAUTION: Don’t do this as a project, or a plan for personal growth, PLEASE NO ! Don’t do this as an “outreach” for someone to join your church, or to donate to a club or be in on your multi-level marketing business. Do it because you choose to. No strings attached, no hidden agenda’s and no angle.

In doing so, you will find incredible changes not only in their hearts, but your own. It’s been perfectly planned by the one who knew of these truths the best. Jesus the Christ. He spent a lifetime stopping to help the blind, the broken, the sick and the sad. He embraced the unlovely and touched the un-touchable, He shared freely what he had with others and he modeled for all of us the secret to finding Hope.

It’s not as far as you think it is, and it’s not as complicated as we make it.

To find out more on this… check out the Gospel of John in the Bible. Or download a daily free reading from www.dailyaudiobible.com today. It’s time we stop looking for hope from those who have none, and start sharing the hope we have so we can increase our own. In doing so, we model for our kids the path of life and we restore hope, and purpose and life in our own families. What could be more amazing than that ? For those of you with pre-teens, the bible is a huge struggle for their attention, check out www.ishinelive.com for ideas and resources to help you bring Hope back into your home.

Keeping it between the lines and on the road of life… Peace out  🙂