Part 1: The Ending Will Be Good

Eight years ago a friend spoke words over me that I hope I never forget.

“Brooke, God is writing a story with your life.  I don’t know how the story is going to end, but it’s going to be good”.

Moments earlier, through tears, I had shared with a group of friends about our long struggle to conceive. Medically, our options were limited.  We weren’t guaranteed I’d ever get pregnant, but that day my friend’s words infused hope into my soul.  I was reminded that even though my story was unfinished, I could be certain that the ending would be good. 

Today, eight years later, I write from a Starbucks in Houston.  The biggest chunk of my heart is in Columbia SC -1,065 miles away (to be exact).  It feels weird to walk around with most of my heart missing.

I have Stage IV breast cancer.  I’m being treated by the world’s best cancer team at MD Anderson Cancer Center, half a country away from my husband and children. All of the normal bits of life are moving along without me:  last minute summer reading, filling the final hot summer days, and target runs for school supplies.  Soon my kindergartner and second graders will walk into a new school-year without the comfort of Mommy’s embrace.  No doubt, this is hard.

I’m at MD Anderson because they give me medical hope that few other places in the world can provide.  Even at one of the highest rated cancer centers in the world, they cannot guarantee that the cancer will be gone forever.  Even though my story is unfinished, I can be certain that the ending will be good.   

What is Biblical Hope?

Biblical hope is not wishing for our circumstances to improve (“I hope the treatments work”).  Our hope cannot be in the happy ending we desire.  (“I hope I’ll have a baby one day”).  This is earthly hope which is flimsy and wrapped in uncertainty.

Biblical hope is vastly different.

Biblical hope is hope not in the harvest of our desires, but in the Healer of our yearning heart.

Biblical hope is having a confident expectation that God will turn the ashes of your life to beauty. (Isaiah 61:3)

My definition of hope:  the certainty of God’s future goodness and grace.

Join me for a Five Part Blog Series

Over the next few weeks I will be writing a series on “Finding Hope When Your Story is Unfinished.”  Hope is a topic that is warm and fuzzy, but can be difficult to wrap our arms around.

Consider this blog series a vessel of hope to the suffering sister.  My prayer is that these words will feel less like blog posts, and more like a good friend on the journey.  There is so much pain, so much hurt, but so much beauty.  I am spurred on by your emails and facebook messages and instagram comments.  We all need hope, and I see a crisis of hope in our generation. 

I long to sit across the table from you and hear your story, and look to the Lord together.  Outside of the minstry to my family, this is the greatest passion of my life: extending the hope of Christ to weary women.  So, ladies (and maybe a fellow or two)- let’s pretend we’re at Starbucks across the table, sharing our stories, looking to Jesus and cheering one another on as we seek Him together.

Together we will unpack:

-What it means to fight for hope, and why is it such a fight?

-Why Scripture is essential in our search for hope, and practical ways to dive into God’s Word when you don’t know where to start

-The importance of prayer, and some ideas when you feel like your prayers are hitting the ceiling

-The purpose of community in finding hope

-Practical ways God has helped me find hope in the thick of the suffering

Is there something in your life right now which feels hopeless, and the story is unfinished? Perhaps you’re single and you don’t want to be.  Maybe your child is wayward, a chronic illness plagues your body, or an empty womb breaks your heart. Is it a broken marriage or financial distress?  Join me for the next few weeks as we together find hope when our stories are unfinished.

“Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you.”  Psalm 33:22