I went into last week with a hard, seemingly hopeless situation, even as I was invited to teach the kids about hope each day at Hope Heals Camp.
“Hope is believing something good can come from something hard.”
— Hope Heals
The kids and I learned this definition of hope alongside a verse from Romans 15:13:
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, that you might overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
William served as my assistant. We used water and pitchers and blue food coloring and the Jesus Storybook Bible to illustrate how something beautiful and good can overflow even when things look empty and dark and hard.
As I began the week with my seemingly hopeless situation, I did not believe anything good could come. And every day, I was invited to believe. Not to believe that I could create something good. Not to believe that everything would work out well in the end. But to believe that God is a God of hope, a God of impossible love, a God of joy and peace and abundant goodness in situations that seem impossibly bad.
How is it that hope overflows from places of hardship and pain?
By the power of the Holy Spirit (which is to say, by the power of love).
And how do I access that hope?
By trusting in the one who is the God of hope.
Over the course of those few days, that hopeless situation began to glimmer a little bit. I can’t go into the details, but I can say that on the last day of camp, I received news of someone I love taking steps towards healing that I never thought possible this side of heaven.
Hope Heals exists for the camper families who have been affected in profound and hard ways by disability. It also exists for people like me, who have been affected by cynicism and despair and who wonder whether love really can change people. I was asked to teach kids about hope, but I ended up being the one who needed to learn.
More with Amy Julia:
- Hope Heals Camp: Belovedness and Belonging
- To Be Made Well at Hope Heals Camp
- We’re at Hope Heals Camp
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