"Honey, the Nectar of Love is ready" my husband whispered into my ear this morning, and with that pronouncement, I arose and went to the kitchen to hold that beautiful cup of hot coffee and sip it gratefully. The fact that he gets up first to make the coffee for us is so appreciated. But the fact that he knows what morning coffee means is even more touching to my soul: it means that its time to talk, to connect before we part ways for the day. It's quiet and dark and the dog is very sleepy and usually curled up on the chair near the couch where I sit with my feet in Bill's lap and my head in the clouds of dream land tinged with morning reality.
My husband is a great listener and I have been spoiled. I've had 24 years of being married to a man who finds my imaginative mind fascinating rather than overwhelming. For the most part.
But lately he has noticed I am coming up with fewer ideas and plans and scenarios of "if A then maybe B because I think it could lead to C". He sees that I am a bit more hesitant to discuss any past issues or bring up an old memory. The past is the past. I want to let sleeping dogs lie- and that's what they want to do anyhow so why not let them?
My daughter is the one who is revving up her imagination and zooming off in all kinds of directions. I'm watching her creative zeal and remembering when I felt like that. It's not that I feel like I'm boring (but then again, you tell me!) but I feel like I've gotten to a place where I'm just pleasantly out of ideas. Out of ideas, mind you- but not hope.
I have more hope now than I've ever had before. Yet the funny thing is I've never concentrated on that word much. Faith is, obviously, a word that I talk about a lot. I see it as an action word, a verb, as well as a noun. I understand that Faith needs to be activated. That without faith we can't please God. I also know how much we have to LOVE each other. That love makes the world go 'round. That God so loved the world that He gave..... But what about Hope?
Sometimes I think that Hope is rather like the middle child: overlooked, quiet, but definitely there. What is the function of Hope? If these three remain, as 1st Corinthians 13 says, Faith, Hope, and Love- what is Hope doing in the mix if Faith moves mountains and Love conquers all?
I see Hope in a whole new light, now. This light is shining because I've gone through a quiet period, and have had dark times of frustration as well. I'm very familiar with failure, frustration, and the need to always be fixing things, solving problems, and having a Repairman mentality. It's not I am Woman Hear Me Roar but more like I am Lauren How can I Fix This? And God has been telling me, lately,"Don't you see, you can't. You can't fix yourself or your life or your kids or your future. Life is not about fixing things, Lauren".
Which brings me back to Hope. What hope do we have if we can't fix things? What hope does the world have if we don't fix all our problems? And what, exactly, is Hope, then, anyways?
For me, I am finding out that Hope is the door that opens to you when you have gone through the Valley of Trouble (Hosea 2:15). Hope is the ability to expect good- when you would have no earthly reason to do so. And Hope tells you how to define what good is, even; because Good is not always what you initially thought it was.
It might be good that you're going through trouble and difficult times IF it means that you arrive at some life-changing conclusions; conclusions such as Life is not about Solving every Problem. Life might be more the journey of learning how to see How Much He Loves You- which is the journey that keeps your heart alive with Hope.