So many friends have asked me this one question over the last 26 years that I finally decided to share my answer on a larger scale. The question was always the same, "How do you cope and stay hopeful?"
I have spoken to many groups over the last couple of decades to answer this question. It was my intent to share more of my answers on this Sparkling Hope site. Although my answer is simple, it is multidimensional.
You will be able to read the whole story in my book, "The Song of My Hope" coming out on Father's Day (with the e-book available a few weeks after that). Our story of hope came through raising a son with brain injury along with his half brother who also had many challenges. It's that simple, and yet very deep.
I would like to give you a little peek into how I live in a hope-filled state of mind and heart. It all begins with faith. If you don't believe in God, this may be hard to comprehend. Faith involves trusting in the Invisible to take care of the impossible. For some, they are unwilling. If you are willing, your benefits will be eternal and full of joy!
I remember a trust exercise we performed in college. A group of fellow students surrounded me. It was my job to close my eyes with arms folded across my chest and fall backwards. The circle of friends were supposed to catch me before I fell to the ground. Oh, this was one of the hardest exercises I ever tried! Once I experienced it, I had more confidence in their ability to take care of me. I trusted them more and my fear of getting hurt diminished.
This example reminds me of how my faith has grown. Every time that God would "catch" me before I fell apart, I would tuck this precious memory away in heart. With each new trust experience, my faith grew. As my faith grew, my hope increased exponentially! Now when I experience something disappointing or difficult, I am quicker to trust in God to help me. This trust brings forth hope quicker!
I still have to work on staying hopeful. When I continually feed my spirit with the Living Water from God's Word, "hope springs eternal!" as the saying goes. This type of hope is sparkly. It comes to life when Light is shining from behind it. This is the essence of "Sparkling Hope!"
Whether you are struggling from a mental illness, neurological challenge, or raising special needs children/adults, if you are willing to put your trust in our invisible God, your impossible situations be filled with hope for a better future. God came to give us a hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). One of His names is the God of Hope (Romans 15:13).
I pray now that your hope will not be delayed. May your hope always be fresh and overflowing. Until next Friday, be filled with sparkling hope!
"We sparkle in His hope when we trust in Jesus and live in His land of deep rest, refreshment and peace." - Betsy Kay Ridgway, M.S.