Looking For Hope

A Message from Heather

I have been wrestling with what to share in this week’s Outlet article. I’ve had something pressing on my heart, but for some reason have been resistant to share it. Then, a couple days ago, I heard author Rebekah Lyons say, “Transparency is sharing where you’ve been, vulnerability is sharing where you are.”

Ooof. That’s it.

I feel like transparency is my zone – I actually LOVE to share where I’ve been, how the Lord has led me in and through different seasons, the ups and downs, back to the ups. But sharing where I am, like currently? Well, that’s a different story.

Over the past few years, I’ve been on rather slow journey to become more comfortable with vulnerability. I know some of my discomfort comes from feeling out of control – actually, that’s a significant part of it. But I think most of my discomfort comes from not wanting to add my messiness to the messiness that I know others are facing. And yet, I’ve experienced the privilege of others trusting me enough to invite me into their messy spaces and join them on their journey. Life is just so much better when we’re not alone!

So, here I am…ready to exercise my vulnerability muscles with you. I am currently struggling to: hold onto hope. In fact, there are moments when I think I’ve lost it altogether.

Recently, our family has gone through some significant challenges around my father-in-law’s health. I’ve found myself hoping his family, friends, and medical team would be able to help him achieve full recovery. Additionally, I’ve been facing some of my own physical frustrations and I’ve been hoping I could find the answers, discipline, and motivation to turn things around. I’ve been watching my kids walk through seasons of waiting, hoping others would make decisions and choices that could help them move forward. I’m seeing friends, our community, and nation go to blows over our differences, hoping that everyone would at least be kind to one another, if not loving.

Do you notice what I’ve come to notice? I haven’t lost my hope, I’ve misplaced it! I am a Christ-follower, so my hope does not rest in circumstances, others, or myself…my hope is built on Jesus!

As I came to this realization, the Lord reminded me of a hymn I grew up singing often, “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less,” written in 1834 by Pastor Edward Mote. When Pastor Mote was asked about how he came to write these lyrics, he explained, “One morning it came into my mind as I went to labour, to write an hymn on the ‘Gracious Experience of a Christian.’” The experience that allows us to remain hopeful even in the midst of despair!

Friends, I’m praying that the timeless words of this hymn will encourage your soul.

By Edward Mote, 1834
Worship and Rejoice (2003)

My hope is built on nothing less
than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.

On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand:
all other ground is sinking sand;
all other ground is sinking sand.

When darkness veils his lovely face,
I rest on his unchanging grace;
in every high and stormy gale,
my anchor holds within the veil. [Refrain]

His oath, his covenant, his blood,
support me in the whelming flood;
when all around my soul gives way,
he then is all my hope and stay. [Refrain]

When he shall come with trumpet sound,
O may I then in him be found:
dressed in his righteousness alone,
faultless to stand before the throne. [Refrain]

I’m looking forward to gathering with you and your guests this Sunday as we continue our Unquestioned Answers series!