Just a couple of years ago, I woke up one morning and didn’t want to go on. I felt like I had no energy to make it through my day, let alone anything more than that. As I sat up and swung my legs over the edge of my bed, I heard God say to me, “Austin, I need you to start hoping again.”
The thing about depression, though, is you don’t want to hope. In fact, that’s the last thing you want to do. But if we’re going to escape depression’s grip, we’ll have to choose to hope . . . even when we feel like there’s no reason to.
Abraham was well beyond being able to have children, yet he kept hoping in God’s promise. Joseph had a dream that he would rule over his brothers, and even his parents, yet he was accused of rape and sent to prison for years. David was anointed king, only to have to run for his life and lose everything he had. And then there’s Jesus, who found hope and surrender even when the pain of His mission was causing blood to seep from His pores. All of these people and more went through dark times, yet they chose to look beyond the pain through the power of hope.
Hope is a confident expectation in what God has placed in you and before you. That’s why it is cultivated by getting a glimpse of God’s vision for your life. As God reveals this picture to you, write it down. Post it where you’ll see it regularly. And continue to add to it as God gives you more.
Most important, get into Scripture and ask God to use His Word to paint a picture of a future that’s bigger than you. As you grow in your understanding of what He’s placed on you, you will begin to see things differently and find the power to hope again.