Once upon a time I held FAITH in my hands. When I was a child, I had such a heart for God. I used to take a hymn book outside to the swing set and sing praises to God at the top of my lungs for hours and hours. I started up my own Bible study in grade school. I prayed, read my Bible and talked to God—and He would answer. My heart was innocent and pure.
Once upon a time I held DESPAIR in my hands. The last eight years have been so full of trials. I have seen my dreams (too many to count) come to a crashing halt. I have experienced heartbreak. I have been so turned around and lost that I could not see a way out. I have shut myself in a closet, screaming, crying out to God that I cannot possibly go on. My world went black. I couldn’t see or hope.
Once upon a time I held DEATH in my hands. In the midst of that despair, one of the families that I was a nanny for, lost their sweet toddler in an accidental drowning and all meaning of life left me. I sat in the corner of my room, poured out pills into my hand, and stared at them for hours. I contemplated taking my own life, not because I was a victim of horrid circumstances, but because I couldn’t see anywhere else to go. There was no hope, no faith, no friends, no one to turn to, and nothing to look up to. I was lost and dead to this world.
Once upon a time I had LOVE in my hands. A year and a half ago, I met my best friend, someone who could understand heaps of the things that I had seen and felt. We shared similar experiences but instead of dwelling on the pain we built one another up, encouraging the other to reach their goals. I held the hand of the love of my life but he chose to let go and walk away.
Once upon a time I had NOTHING in my hands. I felt nothing and everything at the same time. Yet I couldn’t hold on to it. I couldn’t hold on to any emotion, or anything tangible. I felt nothing, even when my mind told me that I should, my heart had shut down and didn’t respond to anything. I went to a play recently that sung this song. These lyrics perfectly described what my heart could not put into words. “The ship is old and broken; sails torn and worn, and the storms keep coming. Lord I am not worthy, take my hand, there is nowhere else to go.”
NOW I have HOPE in my hands. For I have learned that while it is easier to hide one’s heart away and give up, it is not how I choose to live. The more difficult the road is the stronger I become. I can hold my head high, not out of pride, but because I am alive and I choose to look forward to what life brings me next. I choose to hope and trust. I choose the harder, more difficult road because I know that I am being formed into a better person because of the trials.
I search for what is real and I welcome you to be a part of my life in a real way. Reach out and hold my hand. Reach out and touch my soul. Reach out and let’s hope together.
When all hope is lost, what do you turn to? What do you hold tight in your hands? Let’s hold onto hope, one hour at a time, hope brings light and the promise of a new day.
Here’s to the grown-ups who get up each morning—may we seek out hope and find new beginnings!
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