The second reading from the group was about a little girl anticipating her daddy’s return. Not having a great childhood, I didn’t plug into this reading the way I should have. I listened but was still feeling my awakening from the previous verses. It caught my ear when they asked about having a childlike hope. I felt like things were so hopeless but that was an idea only in my head by then, I knew in my heart that hope was returning. I let the soothing talk surround me. After we prayed and I walked out, searching for Chef, I found him in a quiet corner, playing on his phone. He told me someone had just contacted him on Facebook and I would never in a million years guess who it was. I wasn’t feeling like talking about Facebook or his phone, having just had a pretty awesome experience that I was trying to process but I guessed anyway. Dumb guesses like Michael Jordan and the president of Texas Roadhouse. He could see I was frustrated and just as we left the doors of the church he told me. This guy who sent him a message on Facebook was one of the heaviest drinkers I have ever met. Chef tried several times to help him, got him jobs, he used to come to the house, he appeared in and out of our lives but has been gone for a few now. it was heartbreaking for Chef at the time to let go, it just was clear this guy who had been thru every program and jail multiple times, just wanted to die from drinking. so my first thought was how could he get on Facebook… I imagined him on skid row….
As we got into the car in front of the church, chef said, he is a rehab counselor in Arizona. My instant reaction was THERE’S HOPE THERE’S HOPE THERE’S HOPE THERE’S HOPE. I lost all control and sobbed on my husband’s shoulder, with the chant in my head that could only have come from God… THERE IS HOPE.
I didn’t have an amazing childhood but I can still be that girl who waits on her Daddy, because He has been so gentle and loving with me. When I was so desperate for hope, He sent me a message even I couldn’t miss. Today I am choosing hope.