The Hope of the Not Yets

I filled out my summer internship “to do” list in May with great braggadocio. “I can accomplish all these things this summer! No problemo,” my inner self confidently mocked to Reality.

Few items are completed; most are still looming. One of the Looming is a book of prayers on hope. 

With mental, emotional, spiritual, and thumb dexterity I double-tap prayers of hope via text to friends in need. They text me their concerns, and I reply “Hey, Lord, please why don’t You…”

Until this summer.

I am in a Hope Drought.

I have written only four lame prayers of hope for the book. Lame. Not only do I not want to turn these prayers in to my professor I don’t want to pray them to God. Lame.

Intertwined hope.

Intertwined hope.

So, God and I had a chat tonight. It went something like this…

Me: What is up, God, with this hopelessness crap?

God: You are missing it.

Me: Missing what? It is just Not There.

God: It is. It’s just in the Not Yets.

Now, Readers, I know that Hope is in the Not Yets. I know this. I KNOW this. I just feel that there has been so much Not Yets that I live in the Land of Not Yet. Shall we read my litany of Not Yets together?

Lord, in an effort to have any sort of Hope I must acknowledge that I am in the Land of the Not Yets. My Land includes these Mile Markers I am waiting to reach:

  • Cancer healings for friends younger than I
  • Results from my biopsy last Tuesday
  • Medical bills awaiting payment
  • Friends with broken relationships and hurting, detoxing spouses
  • My own relationship
  • Grandma’s decision about health and living arrangements
  • The Unwritten Book of Prayers about Hope
  • A single day that goes as planned
  • Katarina’s unbridled anticipation of Middle School
  • Journey mercies for loved ones in far-flung places like Cape Town, Pawley’s Island, Tulsa
  • Tomorrow

In my list making hear my petition for hope. Amen.

Mile marker 89 on I-70 East holds a special place in my heart because it reminds me of my friend Angie.

Mile marker 89 on I-70 East holds a special place in my heart because it reminds me of my friend Angie.

There is Hope. I know there is. I have to know there is. My concern is this: if I in my church-working-seminary-Master-of-Divinity-earning Self am in a Hope Drought then you could be, too. I am with you in the Land of the Not Yets. It is Here where I have discovered another thin place: our togetherness. Yes, ours. You and me. Together.

Adventurously Authentic. Really Real. You and me.

Will you do me a kindness, Reader? Will you leave me a comment about areas of your life where you would like to see a little Hope? Perhaps tell me where you are in the Land of the Not Yets? If things are too dear, too hard, too silent for you and you don’t want to leave a comment feel free to email me at AdventurouslyE at gmail dot com.

I hope that we can be brave. I hope that we can be brave and say to one another, “There are some serious things going on in my life. I hope you walk with me.”



Writer’s Note: Some Things require the reverence of Capitals, some do not.


12 thoughts on “The Hope of the Not Yets

  1. I’d like a little hope in a job search that is interesting, invigorating and fun as well as meeting my financial needs. I need hope that the financial needs will not overtake us before that great job shows up. I need hope that Terry will be 100% whole and complete. My “not yet” list is way too big right now.

  2. I’d like a little hope that my stepmother will slay cancer for the second time. Treatment starts soon. I hate cancer.

  3. African townships could use more hope and prayers than we all have in us! Thank you for your beautiful prayer for Vince and I during our travels.

  4. Hope for my aunt and her family as my uncle fights the big C. Hope for re-finding myself and the person God means me to be.

  5. I LOVE IT!! Such well written and transparent words! I used to hate the “Not Yets” but have so learned to embrace them as I am amazed at what happens to me and in me during this time. When I have put time constraints on them, I’m usually left with mediocrity. I don’t want just crumbs……
    Elizabeth, there is so much HOPE because you do have ‘Not Yets!” What if you didn’t? We have HOPES (Not Yets) because we aren’t ok with the status quo (or the bread crumbs)! Keep HOPING! Then be still and get out of the way! I sense GREAT things in you and for you!

    Lee reminds me that “What if what you’re wanting now is even better than you can imagine later?” I’ll receive that and keep on keeping on!

    P.S. I have that very picture of HOPE in my office at home!

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