The world we currently live in is full of surprises, isn’t it? It seems that change is happening more rapidly than most people are equipped to handle. Whether positive or negative, all change creates disruption in our lives. It’s easy to feel like we’ve lost our balance and perspective. Questions like these often come up : What now? Who am I now? How will I ever rise above this challenge?
When we want to build a home, what do we use to achieve the results we want? Would you have answered, “the blueprint”? That would be my best guess. When we arrived on earth, we came with our own unique “blueprint”, one that will never be duplicated. With that blueprint came a “calling”, the significant purpose we were born for, the meaning and value we would bring to the lives of others. I personally believe that this “calling” or “life-purpose” is God-given and that it’s essence does not change. It may change in the form it takes but we are still essentially the same person with the same powerful calling our whole life long.
When it’s time to remodel or rebuild a home, what would you look to as “the plan” for doing so? Myself? I would pull out the original blueprint and make sure that the original structure was up to “code”. Then I would remodel some things, add on a wing or other features that would improve the value of the home. When we go through changes in our lives, we have to become resourceful and adept at recreating our lives and improving them just as we would a valuable home. Our lives are so much more valuable than a physical dwelling! Why is it that sometimes we “resign” ourselves to a life that we just don’t remodel and improve when hard things “hit” us?
I have come to realize that of all the essential elements for prosperity in our lives, hope takes the hardest beating. Discouragement can rob us of the motivation and energy we need to seize the opportunity for the “upgrade” that all change offers us. All change really can be hopeful if we choose to see it as an opportunity for an upgrade vs a downgrade!
I’ve heard people ask, “What would you do and who would you be if you knew you could not fail?” That’s a really powerful question and most of us find it a bit of a stretch to answer it. Is that because we interpret “failure” as something that disqualifies us? It seems that ”failing” or the fact that things simply don’t always go well often causes us to lose hope. Certainly we must own up to the things we ourselves or others have done that are damaging and to the fact that there are tragedies in life that bring a lot of grief. But that said, what if we decided that those things were not powerful enough to stop us from getting back up and choosing to do life again? What if we even decided to believe that on the heels of even the worst circumstance, we have the power choose to become the best version of ourselves yet?
Hope is most simply defined as “a strong and confident expectation of good things to come”. It is like a lifeline that drops down from heaven and invites us to grab it, hold on tight and let it carry us upward. Several years ago there was a movie called “Hope Floats”. In it, at a poignant moment, a balloon floated across the scene, symbolizing hope and its’ ability to cause us to “float”, to be buoyant when the gravitational pull threatens to bring us down. In contrast, another symbol of hope is an anchor. It comes from the Bible verse in Hebrews 6:18,19. In this analogy, hope “anchors” us when we feel like we are being “blown away” in a storm, keeps the waves from taking us under.
There is a Biblical reference about “the hope of our calling” in Ephesians 4. As I think about it, the fact that God gives us a “calling”, a significant, powerful and indestructible purpose in life that only we can fulfill, is a huge source of hope. It’s like the air that fills the balloon or the weight that the anchor wields. It is entirely possible for us to choose to be unsinkable, refuse to be deflated and to maintain a “strong and confident expectation of good things to come.” As long as we live, there is hope that we will yet fulfill the calling we were born with. That blueprint has no expiration date!
At the lowest point in my life, I was on the couch for about 2 years, unable to do life because of a severely painful neurological disorder which required brain surgery and a long aftermath of recovery. It was then that I came to the profound and powerful realization that my calling was still intact and my life-purpose was the same as always. That was what made me believe that my life was not over, made me get up off the couch and do life again. I realized that I had actually been given a huge opportunity to rediscover and remodel that calling in the way I chose to live the rest of my life. I believe God has given me a “new lease on life” and with it the hope of living out my life-purpose in even better ways than I have in the past. If it happened for me, could it happen for you? I have HOPE that it can!
Terri Sullivant's Blog
I am a person seeking after grace and truth and what it looks like to love God and people. I am a daughter, wife, mother, grandmother and a professional life coach.