Links Worth a Look...Hope!

(Jonquils, planted by my grandmother when she lived in this house over 20 years ago, poking their heads through the ground again.  They haven't been tended or cared for in years, and have survived storms and abuse of all kinds...and yet they continue to pop up every year!  A beautiful reminder of hope and new life!)

Recent news and discussions of the "health care reform bill" expected to be signed into law today have been enough to breed intense anxiety if I give it even the tiniest bit of opportunity.  It's easy to get bogged down in the mire of the known *and* unknown pitfalls this bill brings.  I feel my blood pressure begin to rise, and realize that this is one of those times I'm glad my dad is *not* still here...I can hear exactly what he would be saying, in a not-so-quiet tone of voice, and see his face getting red as he said it!  (That would be where I inherit the "blood pressure rising" part...:))

While I am convinced that we need to do whatever we can to turn the tide (including sending home each and every Legislator who voted for this bill, and electing people of integrity and wisdom to replace them),  I also keep having to remind myself that no matter *how* disturbing the whole situation is, it *isn't* the end of the world, and there are...hard as it is to remember sometimes...more pressing issues than even our leap off the cliff into socialized healthcare.  Our focus cannot, must not, be on the current events swirling around us...it must stay, at this time as any other, on Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.

I've been so encouraged by the messages of hope I've been seeing over the last few days...some specifically referencing or directed toward the current political situation, and others far removed from it.  I thought I would share some in today's "Links Worth a Look" post...

1. I love Sally Clarkson!  "Do Not Fear" at I Take Joy  

I especially love this quote, "We will never make a decision to quit when we are in the midst of a rain storm."   Excellent, excellent post. 

2.  Short, but powerful.  Focusing on Christ Amidst Swirling Changes by Barbara Rainey and Susan Yates.

I so related to Barbara's comments in the beginning about living as if  "If I could just do..." then "I could take a deep breath...and everything would be okay."  2x4 between the eyes, anyone??  Eek.

3.  We know the end of the book!  Hope in Discouraging Times by Randy Alcorn.

Alcorn's specific response to questions about the passage of the Health Care Reform Bill...what a great reminder that unlike human leaders, Jesus never gives false hope.  He is always faithful to fulfill His promises!

4.  A little lighter...  The Streak 

A fun father-daughter bonding story and a challenge to this "hit-and-miss-read-alouds" mom!

5.  And even lighter... except on the calories!!  Murphy's Hot Hamburger from the Pioneer Woman.
It certainly won't change the world, but it will make my husband very happy when I add this to the weekend's menu! :)

5.  Talk about Hope!!  This video is incredible!  Thanks to my friend Annette for sharing it!

6.  Not a link, but... this verse just keeps coming to mind this week.  Our trust is not in a president, or Congress, or a healthcare system (thank goodness!), but in the name of the Lord our God.  I so need to memorize this verse and quote it every time I feel my stomach start to knot and my blood pressure start to rise...
Some trust in and boast of chariots and some of horses, but we will trust in and boast of the name of the Lord our God.
Psalm 20:7 (AMP)

What has encouraged you this week?  I'd love to hear about it in the comments!

Btw...I have tried in vain multiple times to fix the spacing on this post.  I'm not sure what the problem is, other than it is apparently one of those "Blogger Hates Me" days.  :)   My apologies for the weirdness...someday maybe Blogger and I will be friends again and I'll figure out how to fix it!

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