Thursday, December 6, 2012

What Hope Looks Like

Last night, SJ and I were cuddling at bedtime and she told me we had forgotten to be saying our things we were thankful for each day like we had been before Thanksgiving.  I shared with her that now we were celebrating Advent and that the theme we were focused on this week was hope.

Her eyes opened big and wide. Without hesitation, she said, "My hope is for a new baby brother!!"

I told her I understood that hope, I shared it and that we would have to pray. I kissed her goodnight and tucked her into bed.

This morning at breakfast, SJ was commanding the conversation, as she often does. She was telling JL and D about her hope...that God would give us a new baby.  A brother preferably, but a sister was also ok.  And she said, "I think maybe if we prayed two times, every day, God would listen and give us one."

Dang.  Sometimes helping kids with their theology is really hard.

I sat down at the table and looked at my sweeties in the eyes.  I told them that almost every day since Matthew died, I have been praying that a new baby would come.  But so far, God hasn't answered that prayer with a "yes." I told them that whether He answers us with a "yes" and we get another baby or whether He answers with a "no" and we have to learn to be satisfied with the family we have, He is good and knows what's best for us.  It's not that we have to pray more to get God to move on our behalf; it's that we have to be present and patient to wait for Him until He chooses to move.

But let's not kid around.  Sometimes waiting and having hope is hard.

I'm thinking about this passage this morning:
Romans 5 Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

Hope will not lead to disappointment.

It doesn't promise that hope will always lead to our wants being fulfilled, but it promises that it will not lead to disappointment.  And that's something to cling to.

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