"Put your hope in the Lord for with the Lord is unfailing love, and with him is full redemption." – Psalm 130:7
This month on the blog, we've been setting some goals to help us stay present in the big and small moments this season, and to hold our expectations – of ourselves, of each other, of the season – as lightly we can, leaving room for joy and grace. It occurred to us that all of these goals are really part of one big goal: live hopeful. For us, living with hope in this seasons means letting go of trying to control everything, putting our trust in God and His love, and letting Him show up for us in the joyful moments of the holidays as well as the messier moments.
Here's what three of our favorite seconds have to say about experiencing hope in unexpected ways...
Jordan Rogers on finding hope in moments of desperation
"If I were to personify addiction, he would be charming, charismatic, leader...promising better things, better things always around the corner – there's always something more sweet."
"I knew I needed hope...the world is a trigger when you're early in recovery...I tried to find places and groups to go to get some hope, and I just wasn't getting a lot of it."
"I just thought, 'I don't think I can do this. I don't think recovery's for me.' There wasn't a lot of hope in that moment. So, I start walking to my car, and this dude calls out my name – 'Hey, Jordan. Do we need to talk?' and I was speechless. I just said, 'Yeah, yeah I do.'"
"This dude just took me under his wing, and he showed me the love of Christ whether he knew it or not, and walked me into recovery, into freedom."
You can watch Jordan's full film with I Am Second here.
Victoria Childress on finding hope in loneliness
"If I don't have hope to live, why am I here? People want to live because they have something to live for. I [didn't] have anything to live for."
"I learned to accept the lack of love...I would cut my arms. I would do it in the dark. I couldn't watch myself. When I would do it, I would say, 'I don't want to do this.' I would say that I don't want to do it, but I would still be doing it. I just thought that I was taking matters into my own hands with my own life."
"The hope came back and as time went on, I became a little stronger...and I just sort of secretly prayed, 'If you're real, could you help me?'"
"I started going to a church...slowly but surely, that empty hole started to fill in. All of those things that I was struggling with were mental, and I was able to overcome all of that because of something else that's sort of invisible and that's love, and that's what [God] filled me with."
You can watch Victoria's full film with I Am Second here.
Pete Briscoe on finding hope in unconditional love
"I think the emptiness happens when you get to the place that you thought would make you happy and you discover it doesn't, or the emptiness happens when you continually strive to get to that place and you don't quite reach it. It's two different kinds of emptiness, but it's emptiness nevertheless."
"Every time someone asked me, 'what do you want to be when you grow up?' I said the same thing – I said, 'I want to be the best'...It was really about people thinking highly of me and then feeding off of that attention."
"There was this one basketball game when I scored 52 points, and I was the best player on the court the court that night. And, I remember going back in the locker room and people patting me on the back, and getting changed and going out and everything was still the same as it was before I scored 52 points...It isn't as good as I thought it was going to be. It didn't meet the need that I had. So, I needed to find something that was or someone that was."
"Christ is first in my life because he passionately loves me – there's nothing I can do to make him love me more; there's nothing I can do to make him love me less. He loves me perfectly right now...when I come to grips with that depth of love, with his passion for me, it seems incongruent to allow anything else to be first."
You can watch Pete's full film with I Am Second here.