What I “heard” (perceived intuitively) however was vastly different and somewhat revelatory to me; “HOPE”. I was instantly able to identify with the veracity (look it up) of that impression, and also realized I didn’t know how to affect a remedy for myself. I needed to hope again like peanut butter needs jelly, like Dun needs Bradstreet.
Holly (loving, cute, spunky life partner) and I had experienced a fairly prolonged wilderness season. I was stuck, axle-deep in the mire of negative expectation, also slightly torched that God had “let” this malaise last so long. I do have to add, in my own defense, that we experienced a true “cross” experience, one in which we had participated/endured/sat relatively still while God put us to death. I also have to add for those who have not yet experienced such a season that you won’t be having a near-death experience…
In any event, as I ran the following day, I devoted my banter towards heaven with the question: “What do I do now? What is my responsibility in producing hope in my own situation? Aren’t you (God) the only source of hope?” I knew I was unable to deliver myself, (quick learner) and was of the opinion I was “waiting on God”.
John 6: 28-29 seemed to drift into my consciousness; 28 Then they asked him, “What must we do to do the works God requires?”
29 Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the One he has sent.” Simple enough, but how do I manifest belief? I realized I was going to have to recapture a sense of spiritual initiative, which had long ago perished in my desert wanderings. According to Hebrew 11:1, I had to believe and act as if my actions would, in partnership with God’s purposes, be rewarded; be successful again. Paul said in 1 Peter 3:15, But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. Someone needed to look at me with complete perplexion ( poetic license), dumbfounded that I could smile, given my circumstances. I had to overcome the spiritual inertia, which I had allowed to descend on me, put a patch on my tube and grab the pump again.
I need to emphasize at this point that the renewal of optimism I crave is spawned more from a change in perspective than effort. I was made aware that I did not need to build a hive, but eat the honey. To painfully reiterate: More effort is not the solution, believing again is. My responsibility is, to pick up my rifle, jump out of the bunker and stand erect on the battlefield once more.