I've been bombarded with that word lately. THIS song has been on unintentional repeat. I'm pretty sure I hear it every time I get in the car. The thing is, we can't get out of this valley. Everything good that happens comes with an overwhelmingly hard sliver of crap. Every time we think we're making our way up the mountain, we slide right back down where we started.
I look at myself in the mirror and I know I've earned those dark circles. I feel the invisible bruises; I carry the burdens; I see the scars.
"It's just a season" they said. "It'll come to an end" they tell me. "It won't be like this forever" they mutter. Really? What about the things that won't end? What about Sandbox demons we are constantly fighting. What about those conversations about whether or not Lexi will be here to see her twelfth birthday or asking if she can get your lungs if something were to happen to you. How about wondering if Ben will ever go to college or live on his own.
Those things don't go away.
Things like cancer and car wrecks and family issues and depression. You can fight those and you can win. There's an option to beat it. There's hope that you'll get there. There's hope that there's light at the end of the tunnel.
We won't win this shit. We can't beat Down syndrome or CF. There is nothing to win. We've tried crawling up the mountain; we've even tried sprinting. We can't get up there. It doesn't go away.
Maybe I'm a little angry today. I'm not sorry.
Do I have hope? I don't know.
Maybe my hope has shifted.
There's a difference in hope and faith.
Webster says hope is to want something to happen or be true. But faith? Faith is knowing that it's true.
I have hope that I'll sit and chat on a front porch one day. I'll sip my coffee and reminisce about the old days. "Remember all those years ago when life was really hard? Remember when we never thought we'd get here?" Hell, maybe we'll still be in the valley then.
I don't even have hope that it'll end. I'm not sure what I'd do if it did.
Oh, but faith? Oh I've got faith.
I have faith that even if we stay in the valley the rest of our lives, we won't be alone. I have faith that Jesus is holding my hand, sometimes pulling me along because I can't even move without Him. I have faith that this is a story He's going to use to make Himself famous because, in the end, it's not about me anyway. I have faith that we'll keep moving even if it never ends.
Who knows. Maybe my front porch will be in Heaven and I'll sip coffee with Jesus. Maybe I'll look back at this post and realize faith and hope go hand in hand. I'm not there yet.
But wherever, whenever; there is faith.