Do y’all really know the true power of hope?
Man – hope is truly a powerful feeling. Like I can’t even put to words how strong a feeling & desire it is to have hope.
Whether you are a believer or an unbeliever I believe that we’ve all experienced what it feels like to have hope in life. I believe too that most, if not all of us have felt the pain of losing hope in something or someone.
And mannn is that difficult!
I believe it has something to do with it being close to Saddleback Church, which is Rick Warren’s church here in Lake Forest, California. He has many church locations but I believe the Lake Forest location is the main one.
If you don’t know who Rick Warren is – he is a well known pastor here in Southern California who is also a best selling author of the book “Purpose Driven Life” amongst other books.
I read his book “Purpose Driven Life” and it truly changed my life and my perspective on being a follower of Christ. Since finishing the book months ago, I did ask God one question following reading it that I still don’t know the answer too.
“Why am I on this earth God? What career do you want me in since you created me?”
I still have yet to get an answer and it’s been almost a year now I think. But I’m keeping my head up and my hope alive. Holding on to hope that God is leading me to why He created me and trying my best to not lose hope.
But I’m not just here in Irvine, CA to meet Rick Warren and see if he could help me figure out what career I should pursue. I believe that I am mainly here because I need help. My hope lies in Saddleback’s Hope program.
Saddleback’s Hope program was started after Rick Warren’s son took his own life years back after battling mental illness. I believe, like Rick Warren’s son, I battle mental illness as well and struggle finding a way out. I blog, make videos, read the Bible everyday, go to therapy, read self-help books, tried medicine, try to abstain from sin, became active in church but nothing.
I am still mentally struggling. Still living in a mental hell each and every day.
What has kept me going you ask? Hope.
Hope that a better day is coming if I keep pushing forward. Hope that I won’t have to take my own life for others to truly see how bad of a situation I was in and finally understand the extent of my pain.
I’ll be honest. Driving to Southern California yesterday was scary. Traveling with less than $200 to my name and going off of hope and faith almost had me turn the car around multiple times. But I kept on driving towards my destination – Saddleback Church or Irvine, CA to be exact.
I figure why stay in San Francisco when I feel like it’s not doing me any good? Why not try something new and take a leap of faith? I felt God leading me, so I left.
My hope was and still is so strong. Wondering what Irvine, CA will bring me. Hoping that this city and Rick Warren’s church will finally set me free of this mental hell I endure on a daily basis.
But also fearful that my life could be taken away by my own self if this doesn’t work. Saddleback has multiple Hope locations around the United States, but I wanted to come to the headquarters. Why not listen to God and go all in and give hope and faith another shot?
The Hope program helps individuals like me with mental health struggles. I feel like it is my best bet right now and also too because it centers around God. I need that.
I believe Jesus and God are the only 2 who can truly “fix” me.
My fear is taking my own life so people finally understand my pain and I no longer have to endure what many don’t even know I go through. But what keeps me going is staying in God’s Word every morning, holding on to faith, hope and trust that God will take care of me.
God helped me make it to the Irvine area last night and find a hotel that I could afford. I was prepared to sleep in a Walmart parking lot, but God provided. So I thank God for that and I will continue to stay in His Word daily believing that He is guiding my mind and protecting me as I stay close to Him.
I hope – matter of fact – I believe so.