Surprised by Hope

IMG_2700 I woke up the other morning surprised by hope. It wasn’t the emotion I thought I would or should be feeling that particular morning. But, there it was. Hope, with hints of joy. It startled me. I knew it wasn’t some sort of forced emotion, conjured up in an effort to cover up what was going on inside. I knew God had given me a gift that morning.

Just that week I was in the midst of days upon days of blood work, ordered up by my fertility doctor. I was 99% positive I had miscarried again, but my doctor wanted to make sure. In one hand I held the practical side of knowing how my body works, and in the other hand I tried to hold onto a sliver of a miracle. At a time when I thought I would be distressed, anxious, angry, and overwhelmed with sadness, there was this emotion of hope.

In my heart, God was calling me to come. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). This familiar verse was weaving itself around my heart, inviting me to come. My journey of infertility has been so weary. How did God know? And all I needed to do was to come? To drop the burden, come to my God who is gentle and humble, and He would give me rest? Would that be possible?

That Sunday at church we read a verse from Isaiah 40:28 where it says that God will not grow tired or weary. There was that word again. I am so weary, but God will never weary or grow tired? Could He truly handle this burden I’ve been carting around with me? The following Sunday we sang a song, “Come with me, then let go. Come however you are. Just come. Come with sorrows and songs. Come however you are. Just come.”

This hope, this surprising emotion that startled me awake, was opening my eyes and ears to something simple and profound. All I needed to do was come. Just come. In the midst of my disappointment and sadness, just come. In the middle of unanswered questions and confusing medical advice, just come. In the midst of longing and jealousy of other women’s baby bumps, just come. My God who never grows weary was inviting me to come, to learn from Him, and to find rest. FullSizeRender I don’t always accept this invitation. Most mornings I don’t even remember it exists. In an effort to help me remember, I wrote out the invitation on the chalkboard in my hallway so that I can remember the hope God is calling me to. I want nothing more than to understand and experience this rest that is being offered.

**Thanks N.T. Wright for letting me borrow the title of your book for the subject of this blog post. I’m glad you’ve been surprised by hope too.

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