“Therefore, behold, I AM will lure her and bring her into the wilderness and speak to her heart. And I shall give her vineyards to her from there, and the Valley of Achor (Troubling, see Josh. 7:24) for a Door of Hope and she will sing there, as in the days of her youth and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt.”  Hosea 2:16-17 One New Man Translation (so verse numbers are a little different.)

So I’m finally getting around to writing a blog. Not that I really know anything about blogs. I’ve probably read about three to four posts, none of them from the same person. However, I’m thinking I should probably become a more avid blog reader.

So why am I doing this? Because the Lord told me to. And I’ve learned that when God tells you to do something, you do it. Not just because we need to be obedient to Him, which we do. Not just because He’s omniscient and omnipotent, which He is. Not just because He literally made everything out of nothing, which He did. But because when you obey Him, He leads you to things more fun and incredible and freeing than you ever thought possible all while glorifying His precious name. So I’m doing this because in April the Lord gave my aunt a vision of me writing a blog, and since that time, the idea has rooted in my heart and blossomed. Or maybe it was already there, and I just started to take notice of it.

So in this beginning post, there are so many things running through my mind that I just want to pour all over the page, but I’ll try to hold some back. I’ve got to have other posts after all. And I don’t want to make this one so long that I lose all my followers even before I’ve begun. So I’ll keep it short. Ish.

I graduated in May from Texas Tech University (a wonderful school!) with a BA in English specializing in Creative Writing. All that to say, I’ve learned that in papers there has to be a thesis. Of course, creative works are a little bit different, but just humor me for a moment.

My thesis here is this: to bring hope to the world. And that’s just not my thesis for this blog. It’s kind of the purpose of my life as well. Sounds like a big job, doesn’t it? Hence this blog. It’s just the first step towards all kinds of hope-giving endeavors in my future.

Hope doesn’t always come instantaneously, unfortunately. It can, but a lot of the time (I’ve been somewhat begrudingly learning), hope comes in a process, often through renewing the mind and such (see Romans 12:2) So here’s one avenue where post by post, paragraph by paragraph, word by word, I can bring hope to at least one person in this world.

It might be good to start with what hope actually is. As frequently as this word is thrown around, I’ve found that it’s rarely used with the vigor God intended, and as an English major, I’m big on definitions. According to the ever faithful, hope is “the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best.” That’s not bad, I suppose, but I feel like that’s not exactly the definition God intended when He wrote the Bible. My personal favorite, the one that I live by, is one given by my pastor at church. Where he got it, I don’t exactly know, but he says that hope is “the joyful, confident expectation of good.” Now that, that right there sounds like Jesus to me. When Paul writes that Jesus is the “hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27) and that “hope does not disappoint” (Romans 5:5), I don’t think he meant some wishy-washy feeling that could be easily squashed like a bug (excuse my cliché metaphors). Hope is expectation. Hope is strength. Hope brings life and joy and a reason to smile even when your alarm goes off too early in the morning. Hope brings confidence in a world stricken with terror, insecurity, torture, inferiority, and depressions. And hope, true hope, can only be found in Jesus. Anything else is false hope and will eventually crumble, leaving you bereft and more hopeless than you ever were. Trust me, I’ve had experience.

So this first post all comes down to this. I’m not a theologian. I’m not an ordained minister. I’m simply a girl who has fallen head over heels in love with Love itself. A girl who has walked through her own Valleys of Achor and been delivered by a Door of Hope. I come to offer my own experiences, lessons, tragedies, and victories. Not to start arguments, not to hate, not to condemn. To just point to and gaze at Y’shua, the one and only source of Hope.