My next guest is Aaron Smith. He is part of my online community of friends. His writing inspires me because of its rawness and honesty. He’s not afraid to say what he really thinks and I find that so refreshing. I love how he wrestles with hope in the face of depression and struggle in the everyday.
I don’t really know what to say about hope.
I could talk about the weird relationship hope and cynicism have in my chest.
I could talk about the ways I want to be a hopeful man, even though I have been let down time and time again.
I could sermonize about hope as the one thing we Christians have that sets us apart.
Like I said, I don’t know what to say.
Hope is this weird thing in my life. It’s something that I have, and it’s something that I lose quite frequently. Depression will do that to you. So will life.
So I have hope, I lose hope, and I find it again. Most of the time I find it in god-inspired ways: money from friends to cover rent and bills. Medicine that actually changes my brain to work in a healthy way. My son. These are a few of the places I find hope again.
Hope seems to be like an ocean in my life, coming in wave after wave, growing deeper as I let it wash over me. It also becomes shallow and dry as I run from its crashing breakers. I long to live in the deep, but it’s dangerous out there. There are undertows and currents, tides and deep depths.
Hope is a dangerous, ferocious thing.


Hope is also a warm, welcoming place that I need to be to find healing for my battered, cold heart. Fierce and welcoming. Deep and comforting.

Hope is a weird thing.

But hope is something that I need in a desperate, hungry way. I need to hope that I will write that damn book someday and pitch it and get it picked up and maybe get out of customer service. I need to hope that my children will grow up to be more than I am. I need to hope that my bipolar and anxiety will come under control so I can live a normal, full life. I need to hope that my wife will find the treatment she needs for her emotional wellbeing and mental stability.

Above all of that though, way out in the deep depths of hope, I need to believe that all things will be made well by Jesus. I need to believe that there is something deeper and richer that we were made for, that we can begin to lean into that life now. That someday everything will be in its place, the sad things will come untrue, and that goodness will be seen by all.

I need  that hope to survive my days, to make them meaningful and alive. I need that hope so I don’t kill myself, giving up on everything and everyone.

Hope is an important thing.

Without hope, life tends to wither and die. Without something to believe in, we lose our bearing and become so disoriented we can barely find our way through our days. Hope gives us a map, something to believe in, something to strive for.

Hope is something we need.

We may not always know what to say about hope. After all it is a big thing, a dangerous thing, a necessary thing, a desperate thing, a nurturing thing. There is so much to say about hope, so much to believe, so much to look for and strive for and move towards. More than something to believe, hope is something we must live into, live with, live through.

Hope is an element of life that makes life worth living.

So don’t give up. Live into your hopes. Believe in the risky things. Hold fast to your faith. Hope is waiting to carry you into deeper places, where life comes alive.

Husband, father, believer, writer, nerd, coffee chugger. Just a typical Jesus obsessed, question everything, bipolar, poet-punk-theologian. You can connect with Aaron on Twitter and on his blog, Cultural Savage.

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