This week I had the honor of speaking at the MEND Christmas Candlelight Service. I was scared silly but you’ll be proud to know I did not walk into the men’s bathroom.
I shared about having A Different Kind of Hope.
I’d like to pass along a much briefer version to you as well (some of it is adapted from Rain on Me and some is new).
First, A Different Kind of Hope says, “It’s okay to not be okay.”
This time of year the word “hope” is everywhere—decorations, in songs, in church. It’s often talked about like a fluffy, nice feeling. That kind of hope is a nice thought but it just doesn’t cut it for me a lot of the time.
I’ve realized Christmas is about both heartache and joy. The manger led to the cross. As I thought about this recently it has brought me back to one of the first things I learned on this journey, “It’s okay to not be okay”—and that’s even true at the holidays!
Before my storm I’d been one of those people who always said, “I’m fine” when anyone asked. But I got to a place where that was no longer an option. I remember worrying what people would think or how God would feel. But the response I got was the last one I’d ever expect—love and grace. And that’s what God offers you too.
One of the things that kept me from admitting I wasn’t okay is that I thought I had to be perfect or whole to be used by God. I’ve realized in His Kingdom the opposite is actually true.
A verse we often hear close to Christmas is the one in Isaiah that says, “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our sins, the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him and by His wounds we are healed.”
I was listening to a song with that verse in it one day as I drove home from work several years ago. I asked God, “How can you use me when I feel so broken?”
As I listened I realized that it was in His brokenness that Jesus brought healing to us. We think that we have to take what’s broken and make it perfect again. God thinks in an entirely different way—He took what was perfect (His Son) and through His brokenness brought us healing. Because of this, our brokenness can bring healing to others too. And in the process, it can also heal us.
You are loved just as you are—brokenness and all.
A Different Kind of Hope says, “It’s okay to not be okay.”
To be continued…
Loads of Hope on Blog Nosh Magazine – share your post!
For each post in this series I’ll be giving away a Hope and Encouragement card pack from DaySpring so you can help some hurting hearts. It includes 10 cards (I wrote some of them) and would be worth over $30 if you got them at a store. I’ll announce all the winners when the series is done. Just leave a comment on any of the posts—or on more than one for extra entries!
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*This giveaway is done but you can enter a new one and join me in The Rest of Your Story series by clicking here!