Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.Hebrews 11:1 NKJV
Turning My Page
Hope is always in transition because God’s Word is alive, active, and working behind the scenes. He fulfills his promises.
There are ministry movements that I cannot yet reveal, but things I have hoped for are coming to fruition, and His Spirit (wise counselor, comforter, and advocate) have been up to some pretty cool behind-the-scenes preparations that I had no part in except to step up and do what God directed.
It can be easy to grow discouraged in these in-between places. I want to see the road mapped out ahead of time. Yet Hebrews 11 is called the “Hall of Faith” because the writer Paul lists examples throughout scripture of people who took steps of faith with what their naked eye could not see.
Sometimes it is in moving us to a new location where the fullness of God’s purpose can be revealed, for example, in the story of God’s winding path for Joseph to save Israel and many other nations in Genesis. Other times it is in moving the resources towards us, as it is in the story of the Samaritan woman (John 4). Hope is that in-between place where we both wait patiently and actively look for the answer.
Hope is active waiting.
In the last year, the tension has mounted as I move forward to embrace all God has in store for me in sharing the good news of His presence in our many valleys of despair. Hope that remains parked in what-if is hollow and unstable. A daydream. Therefore, I open myself to possibilities and actively embrace all of God’s plans for Turning the Page on Suicide.
In the Old Testament, God tells Joshua, the new leader of the Israelites, “Moses is dead.” While this might feel a bit like God is stating the obvious, we humans tend to hold tight to what is—the familiar. It was time for the Israelites to move on. I must now move on from active griever to resource for others.
Here are some of the things God has been up to:
- Vacation with family and connecting with nature. In other words, stepping away and growing quiet when life has been boisterous with doing. He (Jesus) is the vine, and I am a branch, oh Lord, strengthen my abiding in you. (John 14)
- Has me spending deep time studying God’s word, fasting, and praying for spiritual healing for those suffering from mental illness, and preparing for the spiritual warfare that inevitably comes as I step out in obedience to God’s direction and will.
- Connecting with and strengthening other mental health warriors.
- Some pretty cool one on ones with complete strangers whom the Spirit was stirring to ask questions.
In the coming weeks, you will see significant changes to my website as I shift from a griever of my own loss to a more intentional resource for you. I have been deeply encouraged in my own grief by:
- Fellow Authors and Speakers
We need each other. Isolation is Satan’s number one weapon in despair. If you and your loved ones wrestle with finding hope in the dark valleys of mental, physical, and emotional health, it is my prayer that I can hold up a light to illuminate what you can’t yet see. There are so many stories of hope, and I look forward to sharing them with you.
I am gathering information, preparing to equip and train, and answering questions about mental health from a biblical perspective. There is so much hope yet to be gleaned in our stories, and I look forward to growing together and pushing back the Spirit of despair.
There is Hope
I have really enjoyed facilitating the shared stories of hope from various men and women I have met in the past nine years. I would love to share more stories. If you have a story of overcoming and hope to offer others, please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I continue to look to Christ as He is my light in the darkness.
Turning Your Page
- Patty Mason—Patty knows what it’s like to battle depression and consider suicide. She also knows freedom through Christ. I interviewed in the following series: Recognizing Despair: Patty Mason Interview (Part 1), Patty Mason Interview Part 2: From Where Does My Help Come From, Patty Mason Interview Part 3:Offering Hope as Caregiver and Church
- Tina Yeager—A consistent resource for those battling depression. She personally helped me overcome some of the enemy’s lies in the last year.
- Dr. Michelle Bengston—A pain sufferer and tenacious hoper. I first met her on a mental health panel. She interviewed me here, and we are often watchers in the night (praying for strength and healing) for one another when we can’t sleep.
- Pam Fields—A resource for moms on so many levels. She is personally equipping me for some of the new aspects of ministry ahead, and you can listen to my interview with her here.