This week was finals week for me. On Monday I had two tests; the first one was kind of early in the morning, so the night before I wrote myself a list entitled, “Remember.” I was half asleep when I scribbled it, but I knew I would be too rushed in the morning to bring everything I needed to. I still forgot a few things for my lunch. But at least they weren’t on the list, right?
I woke up and moved at my own pace. At the moment, I didn’t care when I needed to leave; I was so tired, and not simply physically. . . more in my soul. Has your soul ever been tired? It’s kind of hard, isn’t it?
After washing my face and putting on my favorite casual dress, I began filling my backpack. The list soon came to mind, and I reached for the little notebook on my desk. I’d remembered most of the things on the list, but I was glad I’d written it so that I could be sure I didn’t leave out anything. After examining the contents of my backpack again, I looked at the list and ran through it one more time. Folder? Laptop? Flashcards? Study notes? Thank-you cards? Check. But what was that last item on the list? I read it– and time around me paused.
I’d written “hope.”
The night before, I’d recognized my need for hope. So much so that I put it on a list of things to bring with me, without even thinking it was weird. And yes, it is weird! But. . . why? Why would it be weird for me to make a conscious decision to bring hope along with me for the day? To make intentional hope part of every day?
Life has been messy lately, with a few surprises and situations that haven’t been entirely positive. My brain has been even more messy because of it. It’s frustrating and discouraging, to be honest. But the next day, when I was once again washing my face and grumbling about what the day held, I remembered the list. And I heard so clearly: “Do you have your hope with you?”
I don’t know what things are going to look like. But I know trusting that Jesus is still working in my life is vital to surviving. He is the only real source of hope we have– not our abilities, not our careers, not other people. Just Him.
When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul. (Psalm 94:19)