It's a Monday. A day when everyone seems to be out of sorts and just a little too sleepy. All your issues and problems are staring you in the face as you rise out of bed. Today will be a tough one.
Have you ever had a day like this? I can not even begin to count how many days I've had that fit that description. It seems like the only thing that is sure is the amount of pain you're in, or all the responsibilities you have, or how badly you just want it all to go away. You can't escape the pain so you try to handle it the best way you can. On our own, with just our strength alone, this is impossible. We look to drugs, alcohol, eating disorders, gossip, and self-harm to try and get us through. We need to know that we're alive and that we can be in control. I'll admit it, I've been here (again, more times than I can count). But I've noticed something.
We begin to define ourselves in our struggles. We see ourselves as 'the liar,' 'the cutter,' 'the anorexic.' What we don't realize is that we cheapen our worth to ourselves when we identify ourselves with our struggles and addictions. We limit ourselves to a life of pain and restriction. We can't let our struggles define our identity! There is hope. A Hope that outshines every dark thing in our lives, yet how often do we slip on the shades and keep struggling, trying to heal and move on in our own ways?
1 Corinthians 6:9-11 says,
"Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God. Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God." (NLT)
We all were on a path of evil and headed straight to hell, but Christ saved us. The drunkards, the liars, the greedy and selfish, the gossipers, the cheaters, the thieves. He died for us. So we should have hope! We can overcome the sins and temptations of this world. We no longer have to dwell in our pain! We no longer have to identify with our issues. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says He has made us new! No matter the struggle, Christ loves us all just the way we are. That doesn't mean He'll let us stay that way, but He loves us and wants to help us heal and grow stronger in Him. We must hold on to this Hope.
Elevation Worship recently released a song called "Last Word" and it has quickly become one of my favorite worship songs. The chorus says,
"You have the last word
It is finished
My fear is silenced in your love
My hope is endless"
Our hope is endless because of what Christ has done for us. He has the last word in our pain and struggles. He has the last word in our joy and blessings. He holds us through it all, there is hope for healing and redemption and we no longer have to identify with that pain and sin.
"You Hold Me Now" by Hillsong United is one other song that brims with the promise and hope we have for life with Christ. The lyrics are filled with truth and remind us that there will be no more pain, weeping, sickness, or darkness when Christ comes again. What a beautiful message!
So, as you carry on throughout that dreary Monday, filled with problems and issues staring you in the face, know that there is a Hope we can hold onto. There is joy and blessing waiting right around the corner, so we should not fear or be discouraged! Be filled with hope!