You Have to Have Hope! by Vickie Flockhart

My husband is in Uganda today leading a mission team from New Season. He called me yesterday and was excited to share that 10 people had accepted Christ. I know Steve well enough to know that by the end of this trip, several hundred people will experience new life in Christ. I’m not being arrogant when I say that, I just know that evangelism is his passion; he lives and breathes to share the gospel and see people come to Jesus…it is who he is!

When Steve asked me to write a blog for today, I knew immediately that I would deal with the issue of “HOPE.” I believe that so many people are discouraged and lose their desire to even live because they have no HOPE.

HOPE is powerful. It is not just an “ooey-gooey,” feel good emotion. It is scriptural.

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,”

That is my favorite verse! I have had to hold on to that promise many times and God has always proven to be faithful.

Our family experienced the most painful time of our lives in ministry eight years ago. My Dad got sick and died during this difficult time. It was a dark and depressing time.

I experienced feelings of no HOPE which kills any vision for the future. I felt as if we had been discarded, just tossed to the side. The feeling of no HOPE was the very worst. Think about it…if you have no HOPE, why get out of bed in the morning?

Why does an athlete continue in a sporting event with no HOPE? Why does a cancer patient fight to live with no HOPE? Why does a person who made some pretty bad choices in life try to make things right with no HOPE? You HAVE to have HOPE to move forward!

Change your way of thinking…memorize Jeremiah 29:11 and remind yourself that it is a personal promise to you from God and that it is true! God does not lie and God does not fail!

I pray that you also have special family and friends around you to love you and just say, “I believe in you!” We had many “friends” who walked away during that dark time but we had some incredible people who loved on us, drove to visit us from others states, called, sent cards, invested in us emotionally (and also financially) and poured HOPE into us. You never forget that type of friendship!

So in summary, I don’t know how many people will read this or what you may be experiencing today, but I just want to encourage you to have HOPE. No matter what you have done, no matter what the haters say, no matter what the Doctor told you, no matter what ESPN says about your performance, no matter what the most hateful bloggers or tweets say about you…

God says he has plans to “give you HOPE!” Hold your head up today, know that you are loved and that God has HOPE and a great future waiting for you!

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