Planting a Seed of Hope
When we start the journey of parenthood, it’s often in the afterglow of a newly-married daze and floats idealistically, for awhile, with our own beautiful and euphoric vision of a peaceful and loving future family life. Ahem?
Has that continued for you or do you find yourself struggling to remember the “why” of your enthusiasm for life, for why you wanted to have kids, for why you still bother to fight to maintain the faintest dream of being a happy family? Remember how firm our convictions were early on --our vow to be different from our peers, to keep our marriages healthy and our lives in balance?
Our world has a way of painfully touching us with its dark tragedies, of stealing our personal hopes and joys one little piece at a time. It works relentlessly and energetically to remove the warmth of our dreams and happiness from our first months and years of parenthood and marriage into the chilled cynicism of middle age and compromise. But I want to give you hope, it doesn't have to be life on empty any more.
Most of us get bruised and broken when we rely on something or someone who is unreliable. We place our hopes and dreams on the escalator of hard work and dedication only to find it often stops at the second or third level of life…nowhere near the top floor. We trust that if we just maintain our relationships, they will endure. We touch our faith only when we feel insecure. Our dreams can be based on fictional lives, illustrated by books, sitcoms and blockbuster films. But, if we don’t filter out the fake and embrace the real, we start to long for something that never was as if it actually existed in the first place.
God is calling to you to help. He’s been calling for thousands of years --gently, simply and persistently. I’m here to testify that nothing else can truly satisfy. Nothing else can take away the darkest pain and aches of our lives. It’s incredibly hard to trust that such a cliché is true, but please consider this for a moment: What if Jesus was reliable, what if he was real?
Would He choose to heal you and reveal to you His plan for your Life from the moment of creation? What if? I believe…because he did all of this for me when I was broken and empty and had no answers. I felt His call and I took the leap, will you?
His truth is calling to you…son of Man, daughter of Eve. Will you hear Him? Will you consider taking the one ultimate step of trusting in Him? Nothing else. Will you lay down your conditions, your false expectations, your past pains and your ever-growing fatigue with it all… for His promise of peace?
If you do, I promise you will radically be rearranged. An internal reset of your life will occur as your perspective of the pain, and stress and failures of the past immediately start to become testimonies of God’s grace and redemption in your life. He restores the lost hopes, dreams and joy of your youth. He heals marriages, and homes and renews our minds and hearts with the truth of His cross and its ultimate ability to recover all that has been lost.
Don’t misunderstand, surrendering to Jesus isn’t a magic formula that fixes everything in our lives at once. In fact, following Jesus is no guarantee that your problems will be erased. What is promised to us is contentment. You'll transform from agitated and anxious to steady, from angry to peaceful, and from despairing to hopeful. This happens, not because we can solve our problems any better than before, but because we’ve finally found someone who can.
How is that possible? It came from a seed --a seed that was the embodiment of all truth and life and love. And from that seed, our lives were redeemed as it was put in the ground two thousand years ago. A seed that valuable was just surrendered, sacrificed and buried deep in the ground so it could grow into much more. The fruit of that first seed is still growing today in the lives of men and women just like you and me. It’s the fruit of LIFE. It never fails, it never looses its power or its grace. It heals all who eat of it and it takes out of all who believe in it…the sting of death and hell and sorrow.
Jesus Christ himself was that seed, and His path for those seeking to follow Him requires a similar commitment of surrender --the call to sacrifice our preferences for what we want and a decision to willingly agree to let the old “us” be 'buried.' To die to our personal ambitions and self. Only when we surrender that old self will we find that, like any seed when it falls into the ground and dies, it's re-born and radically transformed into what it was intended to be.
If we insist on continuing to do life our way and on our own, we risk living out the rest of our days trapped in a pointless struggle for meaning. But we never quite get there. As parents we often stop believing in our lives around our middle age years. So we quit trying, but most of us then mistakenly re-focus our hopes and dreams on our kids to become what we never could be in an effort to make sense of what we missed on the way…it’s painful stuff.
God is calling to you parents, not just your kids. Don’t give up on your lives! Plant your life seed. Surrender to Jesus and while doing so… discover LIFE!
God’s grace and favor to you as you, like me, seek to “keep your kids on the road and in between the lines of life."