November 23: Five Years of Hope (Keith’s Story)

Real hope is an actual relationship with Jesus Christ. It’s the life-change that comes from knowing Him. It is the way to get through hard times. It is the focus for a new day, the purpose for walking through a difficult year.

This week we are wrapping up our Real Hope series with real stories of right now from real people who have experienced the life-changing hope that can only come through Jesus Christ.

Today’s story is from Keith Vandegrift.

Read Ephesians 3:14-21

Five plus years ago hope to me and my wife, Linda, was a world full of certainty, of building tomorrow. The future was raising our wonderful children and living life to the extreme fullest. Not only was our cup overflowing in every direction of life, but we also had the sense of power to maneuver any situation toward our favor.

Then it happened. Hope turned into helplessness when word “cancer” came flying into our existence with death trying to drain our cup. No one could have prepared us for what we would have to face in this extreme journey in our lives with Linda’s diagnosis. 

Linda is no longer living in pain but has gone to her heavenly home. The recent years have taught us that life is full of lessons learned. It has helped me to study the negative items of my life and learn from them. Letting the Lord work through them to raise them into His blessing by seeing how He works in our lives has been a treasured experience, allowing me and my children to grow deeper in relationship with Him and often to share Him with others.

Jesus’ Light breaks into the darkness. How wonderful knowing that He is working out His Glory through us! Based on the knowledge of what we read (and have read) from His Word, we can literally anticipate living out our lives in His hope!

Especially looking back over the last three years I can really see where I was delaying the hope by not letting God come in and take the wheel of my life. You know, these situations absolutely work better God’s way.

God wants to give us His hope. Wishing might not be the best way to approach life. One of my favorite verses is Ephesians 3:20. It says, “Now to Him who is able to do more than we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.”  Notice there is no time table.  God has our best solution waiting in heaven, queued up for us. A few of us are able to see glimmers of it on the earth, some sooner than others, simply because we learn to anticipate His presence in our circumstances.