Monday, June 27, 2011


Yesterday Proverbs 31 Ministries posted, "Monday is coming. God is already there. He has laid out the good works He wants you to walk in. Sleep well. ~Derwin L. Gray { @DerwinLGray }" as a facebook status.

I needed that. I needed to go to sleep remembering that. I had been repeating Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. for the better part of the day.

They go together, don't you think? They both tell us to hope for tomorrow, not to despair because God has it, has us, covered.

Sometimes it feels like things aren't getting better, like they're never going to change. Sure, I hear the sayings: "Be the change you want to see in the world." "If you can't change you're situation, change your attitude.", but sometimes the situation feels...well, a little like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic and I start to wonder and worry, and my arms are getting sore.

Not helpful, folks. Not. At. All.

The Husband has been underemployed for some time and unemployed for a number of months. He's not getting much in the way of nibbles, let alone offers. It's frustrating, depressing and more than a little scary. He was once a successful district manager known for going into problem situations and working with people to turn things around. He took some time off for seminary and he is no longer a marketable person. His past experience and work ethic are invisible.

Last week he got a call from a recruiter-type person who saw his resume online. He met with her and while she doesn't have the perfect job for him, yet, she gave him hope. Yes, he has some skills and experience that are valuable and she is going to help him market them and himself and hopefully, get him a job that fits his skill set and earns *gasp* a living wage.

We have had other glimpses of hope that have sustained us through this journey, generosity of family, friends and our church and a blessing of family to support us and distract us. Sometimes we can look at this time and see it as the gift of time together as a family. Other times, we fear the future even as we read in Matthew 6:25-6:26 that God will provide for us and that worrying will not add a single hour to our lives. We experience the provision daily and yet, we worry about what will happen if...

Sometimes I feel envy. (Other people have what I dream of having.) Sometimes I feel guilt. (Have we let down our kids?) Sometimes I feel annoyed. (At least you have a job, stop complaining.) Sometimes I just feel overwhelmed with the worry. (What if (fill in the blank)?) But you know what? When I stop feeling envious, guilty, annoyed and just plain worried, I can count the blessing I do have and the awesome kindness we experience on a regular basis, the way others bless my family and me and just love us.

Provision and hope come in different forms, but usually we can look and see people who do the work of God around us each day. We each have that opportunity in ways big and small, whether it be smiling at a frazzled mom in the check-out, volunteering to coach a sports team, participating in a walkathon or writing a check to the food pantry. They are all doing the work of God and they all give hope to others.

It's not all burning bushes, sometimes it's just a humble person speaking a loving know, like that Carpenter.

Praying that you can see hope in your life. Sometimes it's a big neon sign and other times, we need to look and listen, but there is hope.


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