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"Many times they afflicted me from my youth, yet they have not prevailed against me" (Ps 129:2).
A recent phone conversation with my friend, Carrie:
Me: I see myself journal differently this year. I'm pretty sure this idea is from God, or maybe I'm an "emotional cutter." It could go either way.
Carrie: This is what I love about you. What's your idea that I'm sure is from God?
Me: Journal as if my dreams are coming true now.
Carrie: I love it! That's totally from God--I'm in!
[Journal entry one]
Today, I got an agent!
[Journal entry two]
Today, I was offered a publishing contract! All that hard work and diligence and flying to writers conferences when I hate to fly and praying and crying and giving up (only to renew my resolve the next day) over the last ten years has finally paid off!
Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, thank you, thank you, Jesus!
[End of sample journal entries] I mean really, what kind of person reads another person's journal?
It's risky, right? I can't think of any adults who do this, but children do it all the time. (Minus the journal.) Everyday, all over the world, children "act as if." When my sons were younger, they weren't mere boys. They were super-heroes who leaped buildings (okay furniture) in a single bound. And all I know is, not a one of them is angry or bitter today because their dreams didn't transpired into reality. They pretended for the sheer joy of it.
What's taken me by surprise with this exercise is how much I love writing again. For a while there, not so much. I realize now that I'm most creative when I lock the imaginary women's ministry director (who hovers over my shoulder like a school teacher ready to bust me for doodling the names of rock bands on my desk) in a broom closet. My apologies to women's ministry director's. Truly, I mean no disrespect. I'm sure you're eager to invite the girl who owns a marketing book titled Don't Think Pink, to speak at your next women's event.
P.S. I fully intend to journal that I've received your invitation, so just go with it should you receive a "thank you" note.
Enough clowning around, here's something heartfelt about hope.
My friend Carrie recently told me that one of things she loves most about me is how I continue to hope, no matter how bleak the circumstances. Hope is risky. When dreams are dashed, it's frightening to anti-up and hope again. She told me that this year, she's going for it. That watching me hope again and again and again has inspired her to do the same.
Then before handing me a card with Hebrews 6:19-20 on it, she explained that before meditating on this Scripture, hope to her, symbolized a balloon in the sky, something high above we're to continually gaze upon.
"But it's not true. Hope isn't some airy balloon in the sky. Hope is an anchor for our souls. AN ANCHOR. And no one I know gets this better than you."
WE HAVE THIS HOPE AS AN ANCHOR FOR THE SOUL, FIRM, AND SECURE. IT ENTERS THE INNER SACTUARY BEHIND THE CURTAIN, WHERE OUR FORERUNNER, JESUS, HAS ENTERED ON OUR BEHALF.
Carrie, consistently rocks my world with the revelation God gives her. I'm honored to call her friend.
It's my hope in Jesus that anchors me. Anchored to Him, It's safe to dream for the sheer joy of it. Safe to believe that any minute my dreams will come true. And safe to dream new dreams should the need arise, and not begrudge the packing away of my Wonder Woman bracelets and golden lasso of truth.
Jesus gets my need for such things. How can I be so sure?
Three words: Armor. Of. God.
You'll find it in Ephesians 6:17; breast plate of righteousness, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, sword of the Spirit, and the girding of the waist with truth . . . please excuse me while I put on the whole armor of God and "stand against the wiles of the devil."
We're created to dream big adventurous dreams and to be supernaturally empowered to have and to hold, hope.
And now as I disregard everything I've learned about the importance of a good transition while drawing to an end, I'll wrap with a quote from Wonder Woman. (Jesus is totally cool with it.)
"Please take my hand. I give it to you as a gesture of friendship and love, and of faith freely given. I give you my hand and welcome you into my dream."
--Wonder Woman, #167
Published on Saturday, January 5, 2013 @ 9:33 AM CDT