Saturday, February 18, 2017

Hope Meets Grit - by Heidi McLaughlin

Hope is not optimism or a good luck charm. It takes grit to walk through darkness and believe in something better for tomorrow. On a recent Facebook post I declared: “The darkest storms make way for the greatest sunlight.” I believe this with all my heart because God is a good God who promises that our future plans are good and abundant. But how do we survive those endless, dark seasons without any cracks of sunlight?

We need to have grit to grab hope.

Sometimes hope feels like an exploded dandelion seed floating in the air teasing my fingertips as I try to grab it.  Hope is not nebulous.  It is real and tangible but it takes backbone to step into it. I am at the three-month marker after the death of my second husband. It’s been a long, cold and hard winter outside and in my soul.  As I wait for my new season to arrive I need to do what my brother-in-law Bill says, “Give ‘er snoose.” Not entirely sure what it means but I know it entails hard work.

Give ‘er snoose.

With determined grit I step into hope every day. Here is how I do it:
  • Whether I feel like it or not, I get out of bed, feet on the floor and start my day. Time with God, a shower and I make intentional appointments with friends to get out of the house each day.
  • In spite of how I may feel, I start each day writing in my Gratitude Journal.
  • I keep my body strong by eating healthy and walking 5 km every second day.
  • I DECLARE that I will live in God’s light and that God has my glorious future. Out loud I speak against defeat, discouragement and despair. I will not allow the enemy to sabotage my thoughts with negativity and hopelessness.
  • I stand on God’s promises with hope for my future. I look up verses that proclaim God’s truth for my fulfilling life. “So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” (1 Peter 5:10)
  • I remember God’s faithfulness in the past. I suffered through the death of my first husband, watched my father die of ALS and my mother of a pre-cancerous blood condition. God was with me in those grieving journeys and He restored my soul and placed a beautiful “new normal” in my life. Because God did is then…He will do it again.
  • After a thundering, black storm the sun emerges and we enjoy a gorgeous rainbow. A visual imagine of an eternal promise.  Life is circular. Babies are born-we die. Winter is here-spring comes. We die-we go to Heaven. The suffering seasons we are in do not last forever.  Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. “(James 1:2)

There are many more but I will end on this note. God is the I Am of all I Am’s. The name of God is YHVH, which means “I Am.” When I say, “I am Heidi McLaughlin” that means that my “I am” only exists because of His. I know that everything in my life flows from Him and He would never intentionally hurt himself, so why would He hurt me? The only time He hurt himself was when He sent His son Jesus Christ to die for my sins and freedom. 

What kind of radical love is that?

That’s the hope I cling to each day. My God who loves me like that will walk me into a new and glorious future. I believe it with all my heart.


Heidi McLaughlin lives in the beautiful vineyards of the Okanagan Valley in Kelowna, British Columbia. Heidi has been widowed twice. She is a mom and step mom of a wonderful, eclectic blended family of 5 children and 12 grandchildren. When Heidi is not working, she loves to curl up with a great book, or golf and laugh with her family and special friends.
Her latest book RESTLESS FOR MORE: Fulfillment in Unexpected Places (Including a FREE downloadable Study Guide) is now available at Amazon.ca; Amazon.com, Goodreads.com or her website: www.heartconnection.ca





1 comment:

Peter Black said...

Thank you, Heidi. Your frank sharing of positively pressing through your loss and emotional pain, crowned by your affirmation of hope and trust in God and who you are in Christ, encouraged and blessed my heart. May our Heavenly Father's comfort and encouragement strengthen you day by day. ~~+~~

Popular Posts