The black hole of hopelessness

By Dave Henning / September 2, 2016

“When we focus on the here and now- and especially on all the pain life has handed us- the black hole of hopelessness sucks us in and surrounds us.”- Wayne Stiles

In Chapter 10 (“The Hope of Dying with Unfulfilled Dreams”) of Waiting on God, Dr. Wayne Stiles writes that after a series of stabbing disappointments, we may arrive at the place where we expect little else.  Therefore, to avoid disappointment, we opt to hope for nothing.

Furthermore, Dr. Stiles urges us to quit assigning hopelessness to the agony we feel in any given circumstance or moment.  We become deceived when we tend to equate the sharpness of our pain with permanence.  As we wait on God, so often He turns pain on its head and provides blessings instead.  Wayne expands this concept:

“Maybe God requires us to wait on him in our struggles so that his solution can prove bigger than our expectations could ever imagine.  He may choose to provide blessings that correspond with his ability rather than with our understanding.

We may think we know the most generous and spectacular solution God could provide for us- usually an immediate one.  But  he knows the resolution that will astound and bless not only us but others also.”

Figuring our God’s plans becomes an exercise in futility.  In fact, Dr. Stiles notes, God often crosses his arms.  He does the polar opposite of what we expect or desire.  Jennifer Rothschild (God Is Just Not Fair: Finding Hope When Life Doesn’t Make Sense, 2014) puts it this way:

“We will experience greater peace when we love and trust a God we may not understand than when we constantly try to conform him into an image we have created in our imagination.”

Today’s question: How has perseverance in waiting on God kept you from being sucked into the black hole of hopelessness?  Please share.

Coming Tuesday: the new Short Meditation, “Our Christian colors”

Tomorrow’s blog: “The path of obedience”

About the author

Dave Henning

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