“Hope is peace. Hope informs your greatest peace. Hope is triumphant. Hope holds no law. Hope is without doubt the greatest thing with love. Hope is peace. Hope is patient. Hope endures. There is hope in the waters of life that flow from the river of God. Hope rejoices. In hope, there is life.”
Almost a week ago, one of my little sibs from Stanford messaged me with this random, yet beyond timely note. Not long before I scanned her words on Facebook Messenger, I made the commitment to start placing my trust and hope in God.
Over the past year, the pieces of my post-grad journey have not come together as I’ve imagined. I am grateful for steady income and the experience of building deeper relationships with some of my students. I am excited to move into my first place this month, and meditate on the gift of space.
In my free time, though, loneliness rather than community still cling to me. Since graduating, I’ve steadily lost confidence in my abilities to write and share anything, especially poetry. Then, there’s also my ongoing battle against a dimming type of relativity – Who am I relative to everyone else? In comparison to what others have to offer, how can my story, my skills, my appearance, my everything ever be sufficient to be loved? How can I radiate with light if I just can’t seem to quit diminishing my worth?
And beyond me, the world’s wounds feel more salient everyday. Hatred and every toxic “ism” make it that much more difficult to be hopeful. While others are continually dying unjustly or too soon, I am still alive in this moment. In awareness of this, the pressure to derive deep meaning, and create a powerful impact with the life that I have left to live is all too real.
I am not powerful enough to specifically know how my journey and the paths of those with whom I interact will shape out. I am not wise enough to foresee if life will ever get better in every way I hope in the future, and if it does, how I’ll cope if things become worse again. This unsettles me, but has recently also pressed me further into trusting that although I lack wisdom, God knows every story and everything.
Lately, when I haven’t felt the most valuable, I tell myself, “I, too, am beautiful” or repeat the mantra referred to in my last post. When I feel fearful or insecure, I remind myself that I am safe in God’s hands. While I journal, I also push myself to write down my prayers.
My hope is that over time, I can recollect that God moves in the depths of pain, the peaks of celebration, and the plateaus of the mundane.
Perhaps, this life will never be completely better, but I’m trusting that the lessons learned along the way will make it absolutely worth the living.