Mu and I had breakfast together yesterday. Friendly's is a new place for us to go to, and we're testing out the ambiance, the sunlight level, and whether there's a quiet booth where we can get our talking done without too many eyes on us. We used to go to a local diner down the street, but we stayed too long (sometimes two hours or so) and we got the look "you're STILL here?" too many times, and got the message.
Mu, the beacon of wisdom, has spoken again, directly to the matter at hand in my life right now. She says my problem is that I need to rekindle my hope. Maybe I should say, my desire to hope. Because that's what I've been low on, lately. Mu can tell when I am safeguarding my buoyant hope and conviction of good, and trying to lay low so that if I get "decked" by a problem of vicious reality, I won't have too much farther to go...down.
That's the problem with not letting hope arise. Hope is like a red balloon sailing up above a crowd of people, and people look to see where the end of the string on the balloon goes: who is that crazy person holding on to hope? You know you only get knocked down if you hope too much, the world would scold us.
But my best fiend knows better than to tell me to play it safe in this world. When I play it safe- prepare for the worst, batten down the hatches, prepare for incoming fire, I only wind up lying low on the ground with my hands over my ears and my eyes shut in preparation of the worst. And that is not exactly a victorious battle stance.
Mu thinks I have to dare to hope for things to change in my life, and that if God did not show up the way I had hoped He would- in particular situations- don't be so sure He still isn't planning to "show up" in a new and different way.
Wikipedia says part of hope's definition is this: Hope implies a certain amount of perseverance — i.e., believing that a positive outcome is possible even when there is some evidence to the contrary.
We still discussed what direction I would take with my life if the doors did not open for a book contract or speaking opportunities. Mu is not someone who is out of touch with reality and the requirements of this life: a way to make a living, a career path that progresses, a place to live in peace- these are all necessary. She wants me to know that I might have to choose a new trail if the one I'm on finally ends and there isn't the result I had hoped for. But I do still have to raise my hope of seeing breakthroughs where I have experienced breakdowns.
I remember with longing a period of my life when I did have a major breakthrough- and God did it. He ushered in the change. He brought Bill and I together with a group of people who were all longing for God to change them. I was a part of a beautiful fellowship back in the eighties, where we would pray and cry with each other, minister to each other in insight and prophetic words of encouragement. We shared our real problems, candidly, with each other- and without fear. And when we worshipped, it seemed angels had joined in with us. There would be a roar in the building- and we would leave there trembling and shaken up- in a good way. I experienced healing in my heart, release from fear. It was a time I will never forget. It was a revival in my soul.
Just reading and thinking about renewals and revivals in history makes me long for a fresh move of God. We need one. I see a lot of stale, dry landscape in the Church at large. I see a lot of staleness in my own life as well. We need a fresh move of God. And we need Hope that He WILL move in our midst.
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life" Proverbs 13:12 says.
We need a rekindling of hope so that the heart of the Church is not sick, but rather, filled with longing for Christ- and HE SHOWS UP big time! Show up, Lord- Show up big and blaze through our stale, small lives and remind us again that You do a work no man ever could.
"Do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness..."
and there is no greater wilderness than when there is no hope.
So I will let hope arise. I'm the one standing there, holding the red balloon,
sailing up high.