Renewed Hope

Celestine Chua
Celestine Chua

Easter is my favourite time of year.

When I was growing up, we followed certain traditions. My family turned the house upside down and cleaned everything under the watchful eyes of my Ma, who instructed which new curtains should go up. New bed sheets, wares, vinyls on the kitchen floor… The entire house smelled new! We ate a traditional meal of stewed fish and provisions (dasheen, sweet potatoes, plantains) on Good Friday, indulged in hot crossed buns and treats, followed by the entire family sitting together to watch a movie on the crucifixion. The last bit of it always made me sad but by Sunday when we were watching movies on the resurrection, I got all goosebumps happy.

So many years later I am reminiscing on why Easter of all occasions ended as my favourite, and I considered what my upbringing had to do with my choice.

After every thing I have been through, I have learnt the meaning of hopelessness, then the meaning of renewed hope. I couldn’t learn one without the other. I had given up on life and I struggle with this every single day. But I was reminded of the key role my faith plays in guiding me through life’s storms.

Easter reminds me that we have hope. My hope rests in my faith and my God, and I hope you have this as well. When I think of the power of the resurrection and what it means, it renews my hope. This all powerful, all caring and seeing God, loves me and is on my side, then why should I worry or fear? I have made comebacks from things I shouldn’t have. Things that the laws we live by cannot explain. Then of course add living with chronic pain and other illnesses to that list, it isn’t easy at all.

Then I considered why we changed everything in our house to replace them with new items and what this signified. By the power of the cross and resurrection, we have been made new. He makes all things brand new.

My experience of hopelessness

Even as I struggle with my own demons, I fight in hope, as I live in hope. That is not to say some days I don’t feel hopelessness and despair. I am only human.

Life has been cruel but through it I have learnt many lessons that will never leave me. I kept crashing to rock bottom, and I was ready to depart this world. I shouldn’t be here but God has brought me back from the edge of a dark abyss. Unconscious for days in an ICU ward, twice in one year, it was only the prayers of loved ones that beckoned the hand of God to reach out and pull me up, out of the darkness.

My Mama Claire always says ‘We have a hope, we live in hope.’ And the lessons of hopelessness and hope mould us into stronger beings able to withstand many tests and trials.Out of these misfortunes, come amazing achievements, when we find our limits higher than expected, along with a realisation of our true abilities and talents.

I don’t usually write about my faith in this way but I was really moved to share this with you. Flowers grow from tiny seeds, then they wilt and die and when the season is right they grow again. Our seasons of weeping and pain will come to an end, then we will have seasons of immense joy.

We cannot live without hope.

Whatever your beliefs, I hope you have a wonderful Easter and that you find renewed hope in this season.

Gentle Hugs 🙂

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love” KJ Bible

12 Replies to “Renewed Hope”

  1. I can relate to this in a lot of ways. Thanks for the reminder. I have days where I struggle with my faith and feel hopeless as I lay in my bed in agony from the many diseases that have taken over my body. The pain relentless, at times. Happy Easter to you, too. I’m in the process of climbing back up out of the deep, dark hole, once again. That’s me being hopeful, again. I wish you the best on your journey. Take care.xx 🙂

    1. Happy Easter tlo:-) I am sorry that you’re having a hard time. For some of us it’s harder or might take longer but it’s just important to keep focussed. Certain music (Hillsong esp the older songs like Eagles Wings; the last album No other name is great too) has from childhood uplifted me so I turn to that when I remember.Please be encouraged and know that you have a friend here whenever you need to offload or be reminded:-) Happy Easter my friend x

  2. Thank you. You also have a friend here. Staying focused is difficult for us folks with ADHD, but I am working on just that, through breathing exercises and meditation. And, music is by all means absolutely a necessity. I would die without my music!!!!!! My family went to another relatives home for Easter. I”m still going through terrible withdrawals and am not quite stable enough to be going out in this state of mind. I hope you never have to experience withdrawals. I was taken off a Benzo that I was given mainly for sleep and somewhat for anxiety, in under a week. That is not safe. My primary care doctor was going to help me with a tapering off schedule on my next visit on May 7th. She said it’s a very dangerous drug to come off of and it will take a long time, months, to do it safely. I’m okay with staying in because it just gives me that much more time to spend reading other’s blogs. Let’s walk this journey together. xx 🙂 Happy Easter to you, my friend. 🙂

    1. Thanks my dear, Happy Easter to you too:)
      I’m sorry you’re suffering so much from the withdrawal. I switched my meds or three times but thankfully I never experienced that. Perhaps I was tapered off well because whenever I missed a few days of Duloxetine I used to feel so sick. I hope it gets better for you soon. Chat soon my friend:) x

      1. You’re welcome. Please don’t feel sorry for me, as that is not my intention. This is the life God granted me and I just have to learn how to cope with everything that’s happened to me over the years and all the things that are yet to come. It could always be worse. I’m trying to act positive. LOL Yes, we shall chat soon, as I really must pull myself away from the laptop for the night and attempt to get some much needed sleep. Take care. xx Tammy 🙂

        1. I don’t feel sorry for you hun, I empthise with you. We are fighters and we will make the best of what we have:) hope you have a wonderful day Tammy! it is sunny here in South London:) xxx

          1. Okay. Empathy is always nice. I just got out of the hospital for the second time in the past few weeks. This time I was on the Cardiac Care Unit because I was having chest pains. My heart is fine. They did all the tests and I was reassured that my heart is good. Making the best of what we do have is all that we can do. Having all my follower’s and support that I get here at WP is amazing and I am very thankful for that. There have been many times that someone has brought me out of a deep depression. Hope you are having a great day. It’s cloudy and in the low 70’s. It stormed last night. I love sleeping to a good thunder storm. I am a little jealous, though, that you live in London! 🙂

          2. So sorry to hear that you were in hospital. Did the docs have any idea why you’d be getting the pains if your tests came back fine? I started getting really severe chest pains as a kid and turned out it was acid reflux. It can cause really bad pains. Now I also have gastritis and that doesn’t help. Bad anxiety attacks sometimes also causes bad chest pains in me. I agree the support at WP and from followers really goes a long way. It’s heartwarming to think that people who only know us through here could care so much!
            Where are you based? I love London! I#ve dreamed of living here since I was about 12, but missing home hurts sometimes. My day was ok. I haven’t been feeling too well with alot of pain in feet and legs in particular but I went to church this evening and I felt encouraged. What did you do today? Hope your day was good despite everything 🙂 xxx

          3. They agreed with me that it was probably from the distension. I’ve been getting very distended a lot, lately. It was pushing everything up into my thoracic cavity and causing the pain.
            I am in the United States. Where is “home” for you? Sorry you are in such pain today. I’ll pray for you. You made it to church, which is more than I can say. My day has been kind of “blue.” I get so tired of having to spend most of my time in bed while everyone else is going about, living there lives. All I’ve been doing today is replying to all the comments on my blog and trying to read other’s, as well. Since I keep being away, in the hospital, I have a lot of catching up to do. But, it helps me not feel so blue when I have great friends like you to chat with. Have a good night. I’ll talk to you soon. 🙂 I’m still jealous! LOL 🙂

          4. Aww hun. I hope they offered you a remedy? I get really bad ibs and I take peppermint capsules, in addition to fennel seed capsules and I try to avoid too much of the foods that exacerbate the problem. Pehaps you could give these a go?
            Home in Trinidad. I used to visit NYC every summer as my dad’s side of the family live there. Are you close to NYC?
            I can totally relate to feeling down with being at home so much. I have been off work for over three months now and I am more down about it than usual so I try at least to get out every Sunday for church, once in the week when I have therapy and of late I’ve been trying to go out at least one other night at a social event. I’m always here for a chat and to listen:) glad to be, and equally chuffed that you called me friend:)) Have a great night! maybe one day you can come visit me in London 😀 xxx

          5. No, no remedy for me. I’m what they keep referring to as a very complicated, complex patient. When I was in the hospital, the nurses kept asking if I would mind if the nursing students came in to see my feeding tube and how they were using suction to get the air out. I didn’t mind one bit. I don’t know if I’ve ever told you, but I’m a nurse. I can’t work anymore, but you can’t take my diploma or knowledge away from me. Since I have gastroparesis I can’t have seeds of any kind and there are all kinds of restrictions, but it doesn’t matter, whatever I eat by mouth makes me very ill. I must rely on the feeding tube.
            I’m not too close to New York. I’m in Kansas, right smack in the middle of the United States.
            It’s good that you try to make yourself do the things you mentioned. I was doing that for awhile, but then I fall down, when I’m ready, I’ll pick myself back up and give it another go. I’m just not me with these withdrawals and I’m really sick and tired of having these symptoms. I have no clue as to how long I can expect for this to last.
            That would be so awesome to go to London. I’ve got to get over my fear of flying. I’ve flown many times, but since 9-11-01, I’m terrified to leave the ground. I probably should put this laptop away, as I have an appointment in the morning and must get up early and I don’t sleep well, if I even sleep at all. Yes mam, I do refer to you as my , Alisha. I’ll get over to your blog tomorrow and check it out some more. I’m trying to get all caught up and read some blogs, too. This blogging is just about a full time job. I have no idea what time it is where you are in London, but it’s 10:00 p.m. Sunday night. Have a great day or night, whatever it is. I look forward to talking with you some more tomorrow. HUGS 🙂

          6. Tams, really sorry to hear. So your feeding tube is permanent? I have a friend who has a perm feeding tube, and I know how she struggles with that, constantly in and out of hospital. I will keep you in my prayers Tammy. It must be tough. But remember that you are strong.
            I think it’s amazing that you’re a nurse! You’ll find this funny but my surname is Nurse! ha! I never get left alone when at hospital.
            I have romanticised ideas of Kansas thanks to the media! 😀 how do you find it?
            The best way to conquer a fear is to actually do the thing that elicits fear. My friend taught me that in relation to my fear of escalators! let’s just say I got past it lol.
            Blogging is indeed time consuming! I need to check out more blogs but sometimes I am so focussed on just staying afloat, my blogging work lags behind. You do very well for keeping up with it, I’m proud of you! It’s now 4:36am and I’m wide awake! hope you get to your appointment on time. Being off work means I feel less pressured or guilt about staying up when I can’t sleep. Sweet dreams Tammy! x

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