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It All Starts With You!

Photo courtesy of Carlo Err via Flickr
Photo courtesy of Carlo Err via Flickr

Have you ever lost hope and then plummeted into an ocean of negative feelings? Perhaps you were holding out for a job you really wanted, a new love interest or something else of your heart’s desire. Often when we are on the brink of success, we hit our greatest moment of despair first. Hope is a much-needed commodity, and we need bucket loads of it! If you are going to get through any challenge in life, you need hope and faith.

Why We Need Hope

Emotional storms in life are overwhelming, and we can easily lose our direction. While in the midst of struggles, we can feel like the circumstances we are experiencing will last forever. In fact, we can’t see our way out of them. We may pray repeatedly for God to move our circumstances, and what gets us through these moments is the Lord’s grace infused with hope. We trust that things can and will get better!

Why We Need Faith

Hope is the belief that things will get better, and faith is the trust that our circumstances will move for the positive. With faith we walk in this world, not by sight but instead with a deep level of trust that God is taking us where we need to be—and this includes His greatest blessings for our lives.

In challenging seasons we need a bucket load of hope and the stamina to walk out our faith. It all starts with you! As people we have free will, and one of our greatest freedoms is where we place our minds. If we spiral in negative “what if” thinking as we feed our fears, then we will feel overwhelmed, out of control and very upset. For this reason, we have to place our minds into Christ (Romans 12:2). With this deep level of trust, we know that things are unfolding for a reason. God’s ways are perfection, and just as we feel like we are falling, the Lord’s hands sweep in to hold us and lift us up into glory. We need the sense of falling on an emotional level so that we know we cannot do this life alone. This is one of a number of reasons we need God!

Our Emotional Timetable

One of the reasons we suffer defeat is because of our expectations around when and how things should happen in our lives. We want to be married and starting a family by this time next year; we desire that job promotion now; or we want to quite simply get on with things! We put life on an emotional timetable and can expect God (the maker of all things) to “green light” our circumstances with His approval. God loves us too much for that and instead He holds out for better plans for us. This is why, when we suffer disappointments, it is because God has an even greater opportunity around the corner. Why settle for crumbs when God is giving you the cookie in His way, on His terms and in His perfect timing!

If your last relationship didn’t work out, the plans you hoped for fell apart or you suffered other disappointments, know that God’s best is coming! It all starts with you and whether or not you will believe this truth as you load up on buckets of hope and walk this out in faith.

About Cathy Patterson-Sterling

Cathy Patterson-Sterling is a Christian counselor with a counseling ministry called Real Life Tool Box. She is an author, speaker, wife, mother and friend. Through her counseling ministry, she offers more than 50 e-learning audio play courses to help people grow in faith and have their healthiest relationships. She is passionate about helping people find freedom from fear or other emotional strongholds that are holding them back from living out their greatest potential in God's plans for their lives.
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