I listen to individuals describe their place of hopelessness as a long dark night.
One thing I know for sure is that most of us will experience this place at least once in a life-time. Some find themselves in this place more often than not.
I’ve been there.
And, yet, it’s easy to keep the reality of it hidden.
It’s a hard conversation for those of us—the Church— who intimately know the HOPE of the world.
And, this is a BIG BUT.
In my perception, the Church needs to intentionally open the door to this conversation, rather than keeping the reality of it hidden.
I’ve spent most of my life as part of the Church and can tell you that most church leaders will not admit they are in a place of hopelessness. Yes, some share behind closed doors; however, they do not open the door for others to know they are struggling with hopelessness.
I can say for sure that leaders feel shamed to be there. After all, we’re the people of HOPE! But the reality is–we are human beings who live in a dark world. It’s a real issue.
I think the shame is on us, the Church, for keeping the door closed and hiding the truth.
It seems to me that hope will flicker and eventually re-ignite when all of the Church, including leaders, are willing to be honest with one another about the place of hopelessness. Honesty is key.
It helped me to know others had come through the darkness of hopelessness. And, it gave me hope to hear someone say,
“The darkness of the night can be long.
The Light of HOPE will come and sit with you in the darkness and guide you through it.”
It’s why I love how John wrote his introduction of Christ: “The Light shined in the darkness” (John 1:5a).
The thing is . . . it’s healing to know the Light comes to the darkness . . . especially when we are stuck in it. So. Let’s open the door, shifting the perception of being in the place of hopelessness, and start an honest conversation.
This is hope—Kerrie
Written by Kerrie Carlisle Palmer © 2016 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED