That you may see and have “Hope”…
To see the forest beyond the trees,
A future beyond the present.
And no matter the circumstances…
“This too shall pass”
“It won’t be like this forever”
“A door will open”
“You have a whole future ahead of you.”
That you see the Hope beyond the Cross,
a future [with God]… beyond the present.
Yesterday, I had a phone conversation with the Executive Director of a not-for-profit agency where I use to work. He was a Clinical Supervisor and I was a Student Assistance Counselor back in the day. Our conversations of the past were always frank, humorous, and really real. And for this present talk, it was again frank and really real, but as for the humorous… not so much.
It was still morning when I placed the call, having had this agency pop up in my heart and mind just hours before. Yes, I do need a job and I really liked this one, but I honestly didn’t think there was one miraculously waiting for me. And I was [sort of] right. The Director was in agreement about me getting back into the counseling field [he knows my counseling record, he was my clinical supervisor], but as for encouragement and a position to speak from… he had nothing to give.
He explained that he had just told his staff that due to the recent state budget cuts, that they all were to be on alert for lay-offs. He being the Executive Director cannot even secure his own job. The not-for-profits will have to merge with others or will have to scale back considerably to survive. The future looks bleak at best for all. And I think I can venture to guess that this area of employment does not stand alone.
He spoke of a prevention specialist position that has been open for a year, but he cannot fill it for the sake of the person who takes it and those who are already fighting for the position they already have. I offered my assistance to fill in any gap that needed filling. I am in a place [with God] that if you gave me a job and took it away in a month… I would still have provision. He thanked me [I wasn’t looking for that] and said he would consider it.
All this breaks my heart. I so loved this job and this agency, despite some who did not share my sentiment. Four days a week I was stationed at a city high school, in a position to speak into the lives of youth. Making a difference for this one, and this one, and, and, and… was my mission statement. [LOVE the Starfish Poem] That they may have “Hope”… to see a forest beyond the trees, a future beyond the present. No matter the circumstances, “this too shall pass”, “it won’t be like this forever”, “a door will open”, “you have a whole future ahead of you”, “Someday… “.
I will be honest and say this, it wasn’t until I truly experienced the power of God move and work in my own life, that I began to question… “How do I counsel them?” “How do I guide them?” “How do I lead them?” “How do I do all this without speaking of Him?” I equate this now with telling a carpenter to build a house, and then taking away his hammer.
Now, I pray I am in that place of trusting God and walking with His confidence as a result. So as I hung up the phone I thought, ‘maybe there is something I can do for you then’ and ‘who should I share this with?’ I did end up leaving a voice mail message for my pastor of the church that I have been a member of for several years. [I qualify this because I have many pastors and churches I so love now.] And I’m not done sharing yet. 🙂 Consider yourself warned.
I so desire to partner with people of like heart, mission, & vision. And I believe this is an awesome opportunity to show that God is alive and has always been… here for us. That when the world fails and falls down on its people, God never will. That when His people call upon Him, and search for Him with all their [our] heart, He will listen to us and we will be found by Him. God will restore us!
“For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you… ” [Jeremiah 29:11-14]
What an awesome opportunity to share God with those who have all but lost hope of a future. He is opening a door that He, His Family, His Church can show up big. How can the division of church verses state exist, if the state of the State ceases to assist? No matter the drought & famine, God’s people will… thrive in the land, give with liberality, be that Light at the end of the tunnel, be a show of solidarity amidst the discord, shed a tear in compassion, share a familiar testimony laid out for the sake of another, or be that lamp on the stand in the emergency room.
“Lord, I believe this could be my first official mission trip. I don’t care what others say. Whether it is far or near, or as close as the pew next door, if You say “Go”, I go! And if You say “Stay”, I stay!
Now I understand that this huge task cannot be absorbed by one small church or even a few, but as for the Local Christian Church Union??? I believe we can! I am a huge fan of unity. If the local churches as One were to take back the role it was anointed & appointed for, to meet the needs [counseling, prevention, , ,etc.] of its community & the people it serves… the volumes that would speak to the masses. “Our God is greater…” And if each Christian Community as His church were to join with the next, each bringing in one more to the fold… “Wow” how wonderful God’s World could be.
So today, in this very place of uncertainty in the state of our State, when all else fails… I pray that you see “Hope”, in the forest beyond the tree [Cross], a future [one with God] beyond the present.
When all else fails… there is God!
The inspiration behind this post today is The Word of God. This very morning I received in my daily devotional Scriptures… Lamentations 3. Where “Jeremiah shares Israel’s afflictions” [which felt an awful lot like mine today] to “Hope of Relief in God’s Mercy”.
… My soul has been rejected from peace;
I have forgotten happiness.
18 So I say, “My strength has perished,
And so has my hope from the Lord.”
… Surely my soul remembers
And is bowed down within me.
21 This I recall to my mind,
Therefore I have hope.
22 The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I have hope in Him.”…
God’s chosen and anointed have Hope in Him! Thank You Lord!
Let’s pass it on…
Any schools, agencies, or businesses need a counselor? If you don’t have one and would like one, let me know. If I cannot help you, I’ll find someone who can. I don’t have all the answers, but I know Someone who does.