Friday, January 22, 2016

One and Only One

I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

Overflowing with confident hope - Look at the joy on that little girl's face.

The past few years I’ve struggled with God’s call to write. I deleted more words than I wrote and I was overwhelmed with discouragement. Every December, I proclaimed the New Year as the year of success but, by the end of January, my bold proclamation was a defeated whimper. The enemy’s lies won the battle in my mind. "Storms of Life was a fluke," he whispered.

I searched for success in the advice of other writers and in my own determination. I could do this! I devised my battle plan:
  • Sit my backside in a chair for a set amount of time. Three hours sounds good.
  • Set a daily word count; I’ll start with 500. Surely I can do that.
  • Don’t edit as I write, just get it down. My perfectionism is an effective enemy.
  • Identify my distractions and try to eliminate them. Uh-huh. Well, I’ll give it a try.
And give it a try is exactly what I did. You know, there’s a limit to how long a person can sit and stare at a blinking cursor on a laptop screen. 500 words? I’d throw a party at 10! I was ready to give up.

Then, a few Sundays ago, my pastor preached on Romans 15:13 and God began to fill my heart with the truths of these remarkable words.  He began to quiet my hopelessness.

God, the source of hope…
Not a source of hope, not one of many, but the source. The only source.

Your struggle probably isn’t writing. Perhaps you doubt your parenting skills. Maybe you aren’t sure you can make it one more day in that difficult job. Does a relationship seem beyond help?

Hope doesn’t depend on our own strength or in the advice we might read in a self-help book. It rises up in us when we turn to God. Hope doesn’t transform us into best-selling authors or amazing parents. It doesn’t magically erase the struggle at work or remove the strain in our relationships. It does open our hearts to God’s strength, comfort, and presence. Hope allows us to trust in Him.

[God] will fill you completely with joy and peace... 
Some days, I still give in to the blinking cursor but, when I do, I spend time with God and let Him give me hope for tomorrow. 

He is the Author, not only of Scripture but also of our faith.  He is the perfect Parent and He can fill us with peace when we allow Him to guide us.  He understands our frustrations at work and in painful relationships. He experienced both when He walked this earth.

Nothing is hopeless when we have Him as our Partner. His Truth has defeated every lie. He is our Banner of Victory over every battle. His presence brings joy into every circumstance.

Fill you completely…you will overflow… 
God doesn’t do anything halfway. He doesn’t stir in a bit of hope, a smidgen of peace, and a dollop of joy. He fills us to overflowing! He restores, refreshes, and encourages. There’s no need to wonder about the half-full or half-empty point of view. He fill us to the brim and then some!  

  • When uncertainty creeps in, we can close our eyes and feel God’s peace wash it away. 
  • When doubt knocks on our minds, we can send Jesus to answer the door. 
  • When a sense of failure tries to wiggle in, we can picture God as the grand and glorious Victor.

His hope, joy, and peace are ready to renew and revitalize us any time we stumble.

In Him, we have a confident hope! 

Photo credit: Rob Hainer via


  1. Thank you for sharing your frustrations, my most treasured writings are those of my journals. These were written for me and eventually will be shared with my children and grandchildren. As an engineer, I do not respond well to word counts or to deadlines, so I am not published, but, I treasure reading and rereading my journals. Now that I cannot go and do, I am happy to just be in God's presence bathed in His Hope, Joy and Peace. Thank you for sharing.

    1. You're an engineer! You may already know that I am one too. Or I was until God brought me into another place. In God's eyes, you are published - in His heart. He treasures every word you write!. Thanks for stopping by, Harvey!

  2. When doubt knocks on our minds, we can send Jesus to answer the door. What wonderful imagery Sherry - Thank you!


    1. I love to send Jesus to the door! Can you imagine the look of stark fear on the enemy's face! Thanks for commenting, Leah. You make my day!

  3. Hallelujah, and praise God for hope. I'm going to read this again and again. :)

    1. I'm so glad you were blessed, Tina! This was a post that sat in draft form for quite a while. I guess God knew when I should hit "Publish."

  4. This was beautiful Sherry. I have been through most of your frustrations and also found that same hope He so faithfully delivers. I loved this "Hope doesn’t depend on our own strength or in the advice we might read in a self-help book. It rises up in us when we turn to God. way you laid it out and" Thanks for this inspiring post!

    1. Isn't it wonderful that our hope is based on Him and Him alone! Everything else is sinking sand. Thanks for commenting, Walter. Blessings!

  5. Oh my Sherry... this is such a blessing. I go through the same struggles, adding a loud voice telling me "other writers don't have this problem." I too, find God gets the words flowing, after I turn to Him for hope. The writing life can be so discouraging, thank you for pointing to the source of Hope.

    1. God's the only cure for discouragement! Thank you for stopping by, Deb.

  6. I am a Dutch writer and I reginize your feelings. Love it. God is our Helper. Thanks for this beautiful reminder and yes, a big amen! "His hope, joy, and peace are ready to renew and revitalize us any time we stumble!" Nicely said!

    1. Yes, Jedidja, God is our Helper! Thank you for visiting my blog.