LIVING WITHOUT HOPE   I spend most every week of my life with people.  People are fantastic.  However, they can be challenging and frustrating. How can we help people who don’t want help? There’s nothing more fulfilling than feeling like you’ve been able to help  someone.  Nothing beats feeling like you’re making a difference with your life.  You encounter someone, begin to care, and find yourself moved to do something about the issue you just learned about.  Perhaps like me, you’ve listened to story after story of people who could do no less that get involved in the heartbreaking tragedies that happen.  The stories of people helping people are gripping, inspirational, and emotional.  Whether it’s Houston, Florida, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas or the Treasure Valley, you see needs, hear heartache and want to do something about it.  Many times we can’t help people because they’re stubborn.  But there are other times that people just don’t have any hope things will ever change.

The amount of people living without hope is no small thing. Here’s what happens more times than we care to admit. You experience devastating defeats, a persistent situation that you couldn't change, or experienced a terrifying situation that you could not control your exposure to, then you may have lost hope for your ability to change your life or to change painful situations. Sometimes an ongoing mood disorder can lead to feelings of hopelessness.

Apathy or hopelessness may be puzzling to those around you. Why wouldn't you try to get a job, make friends, eat healthier, or leave someone who is abusive? When you have no hope, you see any efforts to change your life as futile. You may blame yourself. You might say that you cannot manage life, cannot make friends and cannot succeed in getting a job. You accept whatever happens as beyond your control. You may begin to despair. 

When you don’t have hope, you have no energy or motivation for therapy or for any effort to change your situation. What's the use in reaching out to meet people?  You are sure you will be rejected.  Why bother exercising or cleaning your home or volunteering--it won't really make a difference. You know you will always be lonely, depressed, anxious, unemployed, or stuck in the same situation that is making you miserable. You don't want to risk the pain of further disappointment by even trying.  Unfortunately, this painful despair and resignation sets up a self-fulfilling prophecy.

HOWEVER, this is where God does His best work.  One of God’s favorite hangouts is “Wits End.” God is still moved with compassion over His creation. So gripped over mankind’s situations that He writes Himself into His story of redemption.  He declares loudly,  “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jer. 29:11

If you resonate with any of this, if you wish you could make a more significant difference in helping people, if you are living with hopelessness, then why not consider tapping into the HOPE FOR HURTING PEOPLE weekend?  Let me tell you about it.  October 13-14

Next Friday evening an outstanding couple who have experienced HUGE devastation and found themselves in a hopeless situation, will be sharing about how God raised them up and restored their lives and their future.  Ted and Gayle Haggard will share their story and the hope they found in the midst of their journey.  FRIDAY EVENING’S SESSION IS FREE!  On Saturday morning, they will speak again, and following the opening session there will be 12 different workshops available to take advantage of.

These workshops cover a wide spectrum of very important issues and situations.  The cost of Saturday is $25 per person, which includes lunch. You can find all of the information, and get signed up for the workshops at www.deerflat.org. This can be a life changing weekend for you, or for any of the friends, co-workers, neighbors, family members that you know are living with little or no hope.  Take the risk and reach out to them.  Share with them about this opportunity.  All of the workshops will be led by quality, seasoned experts in their field.  Resources will be available.  Hope will be dispensed.  Don’t miss this chance to help make a difference in someone’s life.

CORE VALUES – During the month of October, we’re taking the time to really look at the core values of Deer Flat.  We’re considering why they are important, what role they play in the church and its future, and what that means for us individually.  Last Sunday, we zeroed in on WORSHIP.  This Sunday we’ll be investigating CONNECTING. This will be really insightful and inspiring.  You’ll get a chance to see how important this is to Deer Flat.  An amazing Lord’s Day awaits you this Sunday.  I can’t wait to see you!

LOTS OF CONCRETE – While you’ve been away this week, there’s lots of concrete that has been put in its place.  Over 25,000 sq. ft. of cement is being put down to become the floor of the new addition.  The steel is scheduled to be delivered this coming week, and soon you’ll see the structure taking place.  THANK YOU FOR YOUR ONGOING FINANCIAL SUPPORT OF THIS BUILDING PROJECT!  You guys are amazing!  I’m so fortunate to be the pastor of such a tremendous congregation!

All For Jesus,

Pastor D