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A promise of hope in the new year


No matter what road you’re on in life, no matter what tomorrow looks like, God doesn’t change, and there is always hope.
No matter what road you’re on in life, no matter what tomorrow looks like, God doesn’t change, and there is always hope.
BY JESSICA MORRIS

Life doesn’t always turn out the way we planned. As we approach a new year, finding fresh hope and new dreams can be challenging when our old ones have fizzled out. Disappointment can leave us jaded and depressed, and sometimes survival is easier than hope.


But after a while, survival isn’t enough. Sure, we can generally survive one or two obstacles, like a global pandemic or unemployment. But as challenges start piling up, our resilience gets lower and lower. We experience a financial crisis, receive a diagnosis or someone we love dies. How do we keep going when it feels like we are carrying the world on our shoulders?


Like many Australians, I pride myself on my work ethic and ability to get the job done. It is part of what makes our diverse country so dependable and hardworking. But over the past few years, I have found that no amount of hard work or attempting to ‘get over’ my troubles can heal my heart. Only hope can. Because while my energy and resilience are finite, hope is eternal. Hope comes from God.


I’ve shared stories about my mental health journey for years, and ‘hope’ is nearly a buzzword for me. I’ll wear it on a t-shirt, plaster it on a book and create a playlist of songs to get me through the day. But I’ve found it easier to talk about hope than practise it. After all, when we hope for something, whether it be a better day, healing, a relationship or a better year, we run the risk of being disappointed. And let’s be honest – we have all experienced disappointment in the past few years.


On the days when planning for the future or even daring to hope it could look different feels impossible, I cling to God. Because no matter what tomorrow looks like, God doesn’t change. And he promises that it will get better.


I have often repeated the words from the prophet Jeremiah in the Bible: “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” (Jeremiah 29:11).


I can’t promise that the new year will be easy or that the miracle will arrive as you expect. But I can promise you that God’s love for you will never run out. And that means his plans to give you a hope and a future are non-negotiable. Whoever you are and wherever you find yourself on New Year’s Day, you can have hope in God. Because he wants you to do more than survive – he wants you to soar.


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