spiritual life, women

The cure for fretting

“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.” Corrie ten Boom, Dutch writer and Nazi-resisting firebrand

It’s not so much that life comes at you fast, it’s that it comes in bursts. That’s what happened over the weekend — a sudden storm of quiet desperation that came from just everywhere.

There were three ladies at the farmer’s market. All mid-life. All at the point of tight-lipped, wrinkled-brow anxiety. There were the magazine articles. So many articles and all about the same thing. American women — the younger and the richer, the more so — are apparently drinking themselves into zombie states to simply cope.

There was the letter. Not that big of a deal, but enough to make me a bit fearful. I fretted about it through a lunch outing with my mom. I fretted about it on the road home. I fretted about it past the parking lot of yet another restaurant, until I saw yet another woman. This one was so burdened with food addiction that her feet couldn’t get close enough to each other to walk properly.

“What are you seeing?” I immediately heard in my heart. My response and a supernatural calm was just as immediate. “I am seeing the absence of hope,” I thought back. And, I kept thinking about it all the way home.

It’s true. Those who hope in government are disappointed and then some. Those who hope in religious organizations are disappointed or worse. Hope placed elsewhere is just as iffy. Careers can fail us. Parents can fail us. Spouses can fail us. Children can fail us. Our strength can fail us. Even the weather cannot be relied upon.

Hopeless? A lot of people must think so. That is surely what is at the root of most of humanity’s problems. Opioid addiction. Gun violence. Alcoholism. Eating disorders. Suicide. It all goes back to an absence of hope.

So, what do we do? Worry? Numb our despair with something? Make a better picket sign? Or, throw ourselves into the arms of a savior the Apostle Paul called, “the God of all hope?”

I vote for the latter. The cure for fretting isn’t a different world or different circumstances. It’s the One who can make us shimmer with hope and joy smack in the middle of right here, right now.

P.S. Dune Girl, my first e-book, is a romance on the surface, but the root story is about the God of all hope. If you enjoy uplifting fiction, it is on an Amazon Countdown Deal that begins 8 a.m. PDT (California time) Sunday, Aug. 12. The price drops to 99 cents that first day and goes up $1 a day until normal prices resume on Wednesday, Aug. 15. Details are under BOOKS on my menu bar. 🙂

spiritual life

A reason to live

“I find color optimistic and enthusiastic, and I adore it.” Kate Spade, American designer

It’s hard not to like pretty much anything with a Kate Spade label on it. The woman’s designs simply bubbled over with joy. What a tragedy it is that suicide has taken her away from her family and her talent away from the world.

Yet, she was surely not alone in struggling with a loss of life-sustaining hope. U.S. Centers for Disease Control figures show the suicide rate has gone up 30 percent since 1999. According to a Thursday segment on NPR’s All Things Considered, CDC data shows more than half of the deaths weren’t linked to long-term mental illness, but to life problems.

If you are considering suicide, please, please, please reach out. Talk to family. Talk to a pastor. Talk to a medical professional. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is on-line and available by phone at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) 24 hours a day.

Yes, do all those wise things. But, also ponder — really ponder — the cornerstone verse of the entire Bible. God has already defeated death. He will sustain us through problems and move us into abundant life if we will only let Him.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” John 3:16-17 KJV

God’s love is a reason to live all by itself.

Blessings on the Spade family. Blessings on us all!