"God, make a fresh start in me, shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life. Bring me back from gray exile, put a fresh wind in my sails." Psalm 51:10,12...The Message....."Hope is hearing the melody of the future. Faith is to dance to it." Ruben Alves
A few weeks ago, news was released of a young girl, age 27, who had committed suicide. She left a note that said, among other things, "I have accepted hope as nothing more than delayed disappointment." She was 27. She was in the midst of a career that saw her steady advancement. On the surface, it seemed like life was good. It wasn't, and so bleak did her life and future seem, that to her, the only answer was to end that life. Her note conveys the state of her heart and mind. She saw no hope, only despair. She saw before her, only a long road of disappointment and pain. For her, the way out of that life was to end it. Tragedy. And it is a tragedy being repeated in one way or another in so many other lives today. Might it be so in yours? And let me say, you don't have to take your life to stop living. Many simply live waiting to die. Again, tragedy.
I love the way "The Message" translation of the Bible puts those two verses from Psalm 51. David, who wrote them, was in the midst of darkness, found out in his sins of murder and adultery. If he looked around, he would see no reason for hope, redemption, or a future. But he didn't look around himself, he looked beyond. He looked upward. He looked into the heart and eyes of a God so ready to forgive him. A God who could, and would, "bring him back from gray exile." Who would, "shape a Genesis week" in his life. Dutch Sheets writes, "God can be a Healer, a Savior, and a thousand other things yet not be any of them to you." Does he speak to you in that. Do you know and think that He can be that to me, and to a thousand others, but He cannot be, will not be that to you? Are you living in the gray, no man's land of hopelessness?
The voice of despair screams loudly at us. It does so through our circumstances, the words and actions of others, and our own emotions and viewpoints. In the midst of that, it is so hard to see and hear Him. Yet He can be seen and He can be heard. Sheets says, "Hope often comes in a whisper." A whisper of His Spirit. And that hope is always being whispered into your heart and spirit from His. Can you hear it? Years ago, as I walked through my own "valley of the shadow of death," God whispered into my heart through the words of my pastor, who said to me, "Gary, remember, His best wine is always yet to come." In the blackness of my pain, I heard the whisper of His hope. I heard the melody of hope, and though I was far from dancing to that melody then, I knew that one day, I would. Can you believe the same? Can you believe that even now, His best wine, for you, is yet to come?
Sheets says that there are always two plans for our sorrows and difficulties; God's and Satan's. Whose plan is being worked out in you? Out of my own darkness, He did shape in and for me, a "Genesis week." I have entered into the darkness many times since, and in all of them, He again shaped that week. Again and again, I heard the whisper of His hope, and His melody that goes with it. Out of the mourning would come joy. Out of the ashes would come beauty. Out of the disappointment, even despair, would come dancing, in time, but even more, in eternity. Hold onto your hope in Him. Listen for His whisper. You will hear His melody. Don't live waiting to die. Come to that time of departure living to the full. And in all of it, be ready to dance.