Habit of Hope

Any move we make toward something great requires steely-eyed resistance to shame. Spiritual vitality is the result of seeing all things clearly while not letting the past failures diminish the light of the future. Honesty is the passageway to spiritual and emotional health. Jesus championed clear vision. He said, “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light” (Matthew 6:22). The promise is simple: If you’re willing to step into the light, your future is bright, even if your past was darkened with shame. There is so much hope for your life.  

No matter how many missed opportunities fill our life to this point, today is a new day. God is not tired of you or done with you when you waste extended seasons of opportunity. He doesn’t count the squandered days/hours/minutes against you. Your “misses” don’t anger God as much as they break his heart.

The character of God compels him to extend mercy. His passion for us to win is pure, and he possesses all the power necessary to execute a kick start in any life—your life. Even the most shame-filled lives have found love, acceptance, and power in God. God has more love and light than our sin and shame can exhaust. 

Building a habit of hope and focusing on your future could feel like just another motivational speech that will soon disappoint you. But the difference-maker is God. Fresh starts are what God does and what only God can do.

Tugging on the bootstraps of our life is what some people do to get up. But many try to get up by pulling the covers over their shame. It doesn’t work. Admission of sin and shame is the only way to clean it up. God sweeps away all unrighteousness. That’s not jargon, it’s truth. God’s cleansing power allows you to focus intently on your future.

God is doing a new thing, and it’s time you jump into it. Maybe you can get your mind around freedom from shame, but you still feel like you’re in the middle of a wilderness. Well, you aren’t the first, and here’s a challenge for you: “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert” (Isaiah 43:18–19).

God will make a way. You have one job today, and it is to not let shame own your mind or soul another moment. Focus on your future. Tell the taunting voices in your head that God has dealt with the past, so you’re fixing your eyes on the future. You can’t settle for less than God’s best another day. Your journey to extraordinary is underway.

 Matthew 6:22; John 4:1–26; 1 John 1:9; Isaiah 43:18–19