The Did/Didn’t of 2020


My wife and I have been walking a lot recently. A favorite route is through Wittenberg University campus.

Walking past a dorm recently, a young woman walked out and I asked her … trying to be humorous … if she was the last person left on campus.  She replied that it had been impossible for her to get back to campus after Spring break until now.

I then asked her if she was a senior and she said, “Yes, I’m not sure what will happen with graduation. Even if it is planned, I might not be able to attend. It’s strange. I said goodbye to my best friend when I left for Spring Break. She’s from California. I didn’t realize that we might not celebrate graduation together.”

She turned and walked away and I thought of Proverbs 13:12, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.”

Yes, she will graduate but it won’t happen as she had hoped. You could play the same scenario with weddings, vacations, jobs, and many aspects of our lives right now.

We will go on but not as expected. It’s frustrating and sad.

My wife and I have dreamed of a certain trip for decades. We saved, she learned the language, and it was planned for July. The country that we were going to visit is officially closed till the end of July.

We will go on a vacation but it won’t be the same.  The ‘did/didn’t’ of 2020!

I’m left with, you are left, all of us are left with a sadness.  The solution for the ‘hope sickness’ in Proverbs 13:12 is also found in Proverbs 13:12.

The entire verse …

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a fulfilled longing is a tree of life.

There is a hope deferred and a hope found. I’ve considering the following thoughts for my ‘did/didn’t’ of 2020:

  • It’s not what I expected but there can be something and I’m willing to accept it.  Peace is always better than frustration or anger.
  • The bigger photograph of God’s purposes can still be seen.  I might find myself doing something … different … but better than I imagined.  The crises of 2020 might shake me from self-imposed limitations to find the bigger picture of what God intends for me.
  • Hope deferred for Kingdom purpose is only momentary disappointment. Joy comes with the revelation of the new thing God intends.

In the midst of the 2020 ‘did/didn’t’, I have love Romans 5:5 says, “Hope will not disappoint.”

There are two types of hope — a lost hope that will make you sick; and a found hope that will bring joy.

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