Love and Hope
Monday, August 29, 2016

We've all suffered times of hardship.  This may range from disappointment and discouragement, to heart-rending loss, to feeling lost and questioning one's purpose and direction, to feeling completely broken in heart, will, and spirit.  I know I've experienced all of the above.  Others have been in situations of physical danger, turmoil and abuse I can't even begin to imagine.  The question is, what gets you through?  For myself, I can say that my faith and the knowledge of God's word has given me a solid foundation that never moves.  Regardless of how difficult things are, I know my destination.  I know that God loves me and wants the best for me, and that ultimately I will be with Him forever in perfect peace.

But not everyone has this hope.

I'd like to introduce you to Shiuli, a young woman from Nepal.  She was married at the age of 14, had three children, and was then suddenly widowed at 21 years old.  I can try to think about where I was at 14 and 21, but truthfully, I can't even begin to put myself in her shoes.  It's hard enough for a single mother in America to get by, but in Nepal women don't have nearly the resources and opportunities we have here.  If that weren't bad enough, she had to watch her youngest child starve to death.  Her grief must have been overwhelming.

Where do you find hope?  How do you find the courage to live from day to day?

Thing is, God hadn't abandoned her.  He not only brought her a message of hope and peace, but He brought her a love and fellowship she had never known before.

Won't you take a moment to read the rest of Shiuli's story here?  And perhaps you can prayerfully consider how you can bring love and hope into the lives of those around you, or even around the world.

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Let Israel rejoice in their Maker;
let the people of Zion be glad in their King.
Let them praise His name with dancing
and make music to Him with tambourine and harp.
For the Lord takes delight in His people;
He crowns the humble with salvation.
— Psalm 149:2-4