September 7, 2022
Hope For Hopeless Situations
"I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people..." (Ephesians 1:18 NIV).
Friend to Friend
I looked out the window, my mind trailing off beyond the house cleaning I needed to do and far past the trail of kid items I would soon need to pick up.
My life should be more, I thought. My years should add up to more than where I am today. I am getting older. If only I had more money, then I could... If people didn't treat me like this, then I would be in a better place. If I was smarter, more gifted, or if I had more faith, then I would...
Somehow, I am not where I thought I would be. How did this happen? How did I end up here?
Maybe, like me, you wonder how you got where you are. To a place where dreams seem distant, hope feels fading, and the purposes of God feel hindered and unreachable?
I've found that in a place like this, it's easy for mind rumination, mental theories, and mental blockages to be present - and falsely I feel that problems are bigger than God's power and provision to breakthrough.
Ever been there? Some of us may be there right now. Are you trapped in a job? Lost to real purpose? Hopeless in a marriage? Marginalized in a position? Looking out a window to something hoped for but blocked by a barrier?
Looking out a window to nowhere can feel debilitating and demoralizing. Powerless. Trapping, even.
Yet, recently I discovered that I am not the only one who stared out a window to a land that appeared unreachable. Many of us know C.S. Lewis. He wrote the famed Narnia series. Apparently, his mom, afraid of sickness, often wouldn't let him go outside. So, through the barricaded windows of his house, he stared out into the green lands of Castlereagh Hills of Ireland. Through what probably seemed like iron gates holding him in, Lewis' imaginative mind ventured out to play and create adventures with God, right from his own prison.
Today, many of us have been blessed to experience the Narnia story in book or on the big screen. Multitudes have been impacted thanks to Lewis' words.
Like Lewis, we are wise to never box God in. He is greater, higher, and more powerful than any limitations we set upon ourselves.
Instead of seeing hindrances, Lewis saw God. His spiritual eyes, more than his natural eyes, freed him.
This reminds me of the apostle Paul's prayer. He prayed, "I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people..." (Ephesians 1:18 NIV).
The reality is there is no window view, situation, or perception that is unredeemable when God is involved. There is no powerless prison God can't turn into a powerful purpose. There is no vision that is too horrible for God to redeem, if only we have eyes to see.
My friend, I know the pain is real, but more real than anything we feel is our Savior's ability to do something good and redeeming in that very place of hurt, if only we have eyes to see. If only we are willing to receive what He has for us. If only we look for His hope in seemingly hopeless quandaries.
It is never easy to come face-to-face with pain. I know. I get it. But, if we venture out and take the risk, we just may find whole new lands of joy and peace. We just may find that God is there. We may discover God is ready, able, and willing to help us. We may realize that we are never left alone.
Enlightened eyes see new horizons of hope.
Dear Lord, I pray that the eyes of our hearts may be enlightened to know the hope to which You have called us. There are riches of glorious inheritance, for us, Your holy people. Help us to remember all we have in You, Christ Jesus. In You, there is always hope. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Now It's Your Turn
How have you lost hope? What barriers, blockades, prisons, or mental arguments loom large before you? What new vision may you gain when you remember God's promises? How does this restore your hope?
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