Heat, haze, and humidity…
Three words that describe summers of my life.
Hurt, heartache, and yet…hope.
Three words that describe the summer that changed me – the summer of hope.
It was much like being the new kid in school – thrust into a situation I didn’t understand, watching as the world went on while my life seemed frozen. I felt like the kid standing in the hall long after the bell rang, trying to find my way to class.
Just a few months before that summer, choices had been made around me that left me with such a hole in my heart. I spent the winter and spring trying to keep up with the basics of life. I found myself in places I’d never been, making choices I never thought I’d have to make, and having to rely on others for so much of my own personal well-being.
Hurt and heartache for sure. My own home seemed to hurt. The walls seemed to sag under the heaviness of what was now my life. Any joy that had once lived there seemed to have packed up and moved out. What was once a home now seemed like just another house on just another street.
There was nothing special anymore.
Except for hope.
In Genesis 32 we read about the story of Jacob wrestling with God. Jacob was on his way to where his brother, Esau, was living. Jacob had heard that Esau was coming to meet him, along with 400 men. Jacob immediately took steps to preserve his family.
Jacob sent a large gift of livestock ahead to Esau, and then Jacob and his family began to prepare to meet Esau. Jacob sent his family across the stream, but he stayed behind for the night.
So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, ‘Let me go for it is daybreak.’
But Jacob replied, ‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.’
The man asked him, ‘What is your name?’
‘Jacob,’ he answered.
Then the man said, ‘Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.’
(Genesis 32: 24-28)
We don’t really know why they wrestled, or what either was hoping to get, other than when Jacob asked for a blessing.
He wrestled all night, with only the hope that he would be able to obtain a blessing.
The summer that changed me was the one where I wrestled with God – for my family, for the needs of everyday life, for the future, for tangible reminders that He had not abandoned me.
I wrestled with God that summer, simply for the hope that He would provide a blessing in my life.
This story from the life of Jacob inspires me to keep going, to claim every promise of God for my own, knowing that He never changes.
This is the summer of hope. This is the summer that is changing me, and while it is challenging, while each new day seems to hold some frustration, I continue to trust God, knowing that He will provide the blessing at just the right time.
Are you worn out from battling life? Sisters, start claiming His promises. Remind Him of His promises to be faithful to you. Remember to keep wrestling, as Jacob did, with the hope that God will provide the blessing! And then watch as your heart begins to grow in hope!
Summers That Changed Us Series
This post was a part of the “Summers That Changed Us” series going on this month at Managing Your Blessings. Be sure to check out other great posts in the series!