Hope In A Dark World

Thoughts of sadness and grief have been running through my mind. The acts of mankind have been horrendous. Horrible deeds fill the news everyday.

   Yet, my hope will not completely fail, because I know the One who is in control. It will remain because I know of the prosperous plans He has, plans to give me 'a hope and a future' (Jeremiah 29:11).

  However, this world is broken. This world is living in lies, lies that have been darted from the arrows of the enemy.  This world is desperately looking for truth, but such truth has not been found. Not until one discovers the words of Scripture, until the words of Scripture have been impressed on the hearts of its reader, has a person discovered truth, when their life has radically been changed by the presence of the Lord and His hand in their life.

   So much sadness, so much grief, so much pain, has flooded this world. As I keep reading posts again and again about the same issue, compassion for life, for the innocent creatures on this earth, has been overtaking me. How can a human being shoot someone else's beloved pet, just because it's in sight? How can a human being hang an innocent cat, a missing family member, on a tree to die? So many incidents in so short a time, all in the area where I live. And not only do some have lack of compassion for animals, but the same lack of compassion remains for other humans. How can a human being, a person no different than me and you, kill another human being? Yet this act has been going on for thousands of years, beginning with Cain and Abel.

Is there no remorse? No regrets? No sadness? No compassion?

My heart grieves to hear such stories, but it is the state of the world we live in.

The truth is, this world is in desperate need of a Savior. 

  This world needs Jesus, the One who died for the murderers, the careless animal killers, the liars. He is the One who died for me and you, "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). 

   The acts of humanity are shameful. How horrible they are just to hear about, yet how scary it is to live in such a world! Yet we are all sinful. We are all in need of a Savior. However, Christians have been forgiven. They are no longer stuck in sin, but have been made new. 

  This world is a scary place to live in, but there is hope because of Jesus. The words of Scripture have the power to transform lives. When people discover truth, the lies encompassing their lives will disintegrate. Christians, it's time to shine God's light in this dark world and share the truth of God's Word with others. It's time to answer the calling to make a difference. It's time to be the city on a hill that we are destined to be!

You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Matthew 5:14


Like A Breeze

Time is short.

It's like a breeze that comes and goes, a breeze that lasts within seconds and then...it's gone.

   Isn't life like that? Moments don't last. They come like a breeze and then are gone before we know it. As I get older, I've been coming face to face with the reality of how fast time goes by, how quickly life changes, and the necessity of soaking in every moment. This life isn't meant to be lived while just 'going through the motions'. We were meant to enjoy this life that God has blessed us enough to have. We were meant to make memories and build relationships with others. Most of all, we were meant to cherish every second of our lives and use it to make an eternal impact on others, starting with a heart focused on the Lord and a life placed in the hands of our Creator.

   And as soon as we get comfortable, as soon as we think that the way life is will stay the way it is for awhile, things change. Schedules change. Friendships change. Relationships change. Life changes. Many times, things will never return to the way that they were. It's really a sad thought, but isn't it the truth?

What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. James 4:14

   My senior year is about to be here. Junior year was such an amazing year, but things are about to change. I am going to be taking more college classes. Some of my friends just graduated, so I won't have classes with them anymore. My good friend, who was an exchange student, just flew back to Japan. It's like all of these memories, all compiled into one year, have come and gone like a breeze. A pleasant breeze, but a quick one.

   It's so sad, but it's such a reminder that this life is temporary. Compared to the rest of eternity, life is so short. We need to place our focus on the heavenly rewards of God's Kingdom, an eternal perspective that takes our minds off of the temporal pleasures of this world and onto the rewards that will benefit us for all of eternity. Love others. Make every moment count. Lead people to Christ, and to the life that we were all called to live.

All we have are the memories, the intangible moments of a past that can never be rewound.

Things change. People change. Relationships change. Moments change. But there's good news! God's love and His eternal Kingdom will always stay the same.

All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.
1 Peter 1:24-25


Love Take Me Over

Love, take these words that I'm speaking
Love, take these thoughts that I'm thinking
Love, take me over
Love, fill up all of my space and
Love, stand right here in my place
Love, hear this prayer that I'm praying
Love, take me, love, take me over
Love, take me over

Let Your never-ending, never-failing, all-consuming love
Take over me

"Love Take Me Over"//Steven Curtis Chapman

   We live in a broken and fallen world. We live in a world of self harm and depression. We live in a world where the light is a small dot in a huge circle of darkness. This world is constantly looking, but they are never finding. Everyone has a hole in their heart, and that hole can only be filled by the love and power of Jesus Christ. But until we discover and are changed by His love, that hole will never be filled. That hole will always leave us with a craving for something more. It will always lead us to a feeling of emptiness and depression.

   As a Christ follower, as a girl impacted by His love and changed by His grace, I am now called to share His love to the world. This world is looking for a love that cannot be satisfied by anyone or anything on this earth. God wants to use me (and you!) to share His love to others. 

   But in a world of murder and war and minute by minute crime, how can we love? How can love still remain in a world of so much sin and hatred, when we end up on the opposing side of humanity and when those around us turn their backs on us? 

As Jesus died the most horrible death, He said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." (Luke 23:34)

  And it's because of His great love for us that He sacrificed His entire life for us on that cross. Even though we are sinners. Even though we live in a world of darkness. Yes, Jesus died for you because He loves you!

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

  Because of His love, I must love. Steven Curtis Chapman's song, "Love Take Me Over", has been such a reminder to me of this. It's a reminder that my life should be completely rooted in His love. And even though I'm not perfect, it's a reminder that every action, every word, and every thought should be carried out by His love. It's a reminder of a daily prayer, daily asking the Holy Spirit to "take these words that I'm speaking" and "these thoughts that I'm thinking" and for His love to take me over. When love "fills up all of my space" and "stands here in my place", that is when God will use me to do amazing things. When I allow God's love to take over me, I will be used to lead people out of the dark places and into the light. 

   What is love? Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a)

   It's time to clothe myself daily in a heart of patience and kindness. It's time to take up the shield and protect myself from the temptations to envy, boast, and stand in pride. Love is not selfish, but it puts others first. It makes others feel important. It is built in humility. Most of all, it leads others to Christ.

   In a broken and fallen world, it is my prayer that God's love, His never-ending, never-failing, all-consuming love, to take over me. I want kindness to rule over every word, compassion in every thought, and humility in every deed. I want to encourage others. I want to help others when they least expect help to come. I want to serve others with acts of a humble and patient heart. This world is searching for love. Are you willing to live a life that is taken over by His love?