It was years ago now, when the doorbell rang and I dragged my weary, wounded self to open it, my eyes perpetually aching from tears that I could not seem to stop.
I felt destroyed, demolished. As if a mack truck, driven by a team of people I loved and trusted, had run over me without a thought and as I lay mangled in the intersection folks walked by, happy and oblivious to the damage they had passively assented to.
I was exhausted, and lonely, and tired of battling despair.
I slowly opened the door and was greeted hesitantly by someone brave enough to walk into my pain. She was holding a clear glass bowl of rocks that looked as gray and barren and hopeless as my life that day.
She handed me the bowl of rocks and then I noticed in the middle a tiny green shoot reaching up.
She said, “There’s a bulb in the middle of this mess of rocks. My prayer is that as it grows and flowers into loveliness, God will bring life and beauty out of what seems so ugly to you now. I believe He will.”
Sometimes we need others to hold the bulbs of hope for us. Sometimes we need others to believe when we can’t. Looking back on that season of disillusionment and fear, what got me through were many “hope holders” who risked showing up and not letting go.
One sent me Isaiah 58:11. I have her name and the date written in my Bible:
“The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a print whose waters never fail.”
Another showed up with a prayer shawl, praying that as I wrapped myself in it I would feel wrapped in God’s love.
And another coordinated folks to write notes to open every day for weeks as I crawled away into a hole far from home, trying to heal.
And then, the other day I found this card and thought of a friend who needs me to hold bulbs of hope for her theses days.
Some of you may need the hope that you’re not alone today.
Others may need the hope that even though you don’t understand, God really does have this and it’s gonna be ok.
You may be experiencing loss and need hope that God will still fill your hands with good gifts.
Who are you holding hope for? Do you need someone to hold it for you? I will.