Borrowing Hope

by Tamara

The days are dark and I fall silent. I see words pass, worlds pass, keep going without me. I have too much to say and none that would bless, so I keep fingers from keyboard, keep quiet.

And she texts me, “Borrowing hope is allowed.”

I’m the worst and I know it, can’t stand my own sight. Imagine a mirror and kindness I can’t speak, see I don’t need loathing, just rescue.

And she gifts me, “Remember you are loved.”

Gave til gone and now I’m no use, myself nowhere to be found. I think I want happy, but maybe just free, and maybe that’s deeper than happy. Hope hangs on the thought that maybe myself is found wherever abides that freedom.

And they write me, “That’s what makes you human.”

I pray but I shrink back, don’t want to hear answer. Trust God’s plan is good, but afraid I won’t like it. Still I strike Him a deal: I’ll show up to church just to wear this red dress, and I’ll see what You’ll do, and I trust You.

And he mails me, “You sing an old song of beauty.”

Not sure I can sing worship, not sure I ought commune. But my soul-ache tells me I need to do them both, so I do because I’m there wearing that red dress. And it’s half-holy, the way somehow I fit in the together.

And she emails me, “We are a community, engaged in something bigger than us.”

The days are still dark and my own words, still scarce. I borrow hope from their words, their gifts, their love, their songs. And it’s just enough, enough to glimpse light, and I see I am still there.


54 Responses to “Borrowing Hope”

  1. Renee Ronika October 15, 2012 at 1:03 am #

    May your strength come quickly from above. May it come to stay. May it be so overwhelming that it imparts to others. May you know the victory you have already won because Christ is in you, Tamara.

    And He is never silent.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:02 pm #

      Thank you for being with me in this with your prayer and prophecy.

  2. Alise October 15, 2012 at 5:52 am #

    Love you more than these tiny letters can express.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:03 pm #

      I know. Thank you for sending me your tiny letters from day to day.

  3. Mia October 15, 2012 at 6:03 am #

    Hi Tamara
    Thanks, this encourages me! I suffer fom Fm/CFS and today my soul ache is striving against a big, dark enemy, despair, lurking around every single moment!

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:05 pm #

      So grateful you’re encouraged, Mia. So glad your soul is striving against the despair. That’s hope right there.

  4. Shae October 15, 2012 at 6:10 am #

    Heart stirrings amid what you feel to be wordless – thank you. I can so relate. It’s OK to borrow hope. It’s also OK to make borrowed hope your own.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

      Shae, thank you for speaking up again here and for the email I never could quite answer. Know that it meant so much.

  5. Joy @ Joy in this Journey October 15, 2012 at 6:28 am #

    I feel how heavy. Let us help carry you. You have encouraged so many, and now we get to love you. Praying so much.

  6. Matt @ The Church of No People October 15, 2012 at 6:41 am #

    Hey Tamara, I know we don’t truly know what’s going on, but I hope you get things figured out. God loves you and so do we! :)

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:07 pm #

      Thanks so much, Matt. It will be well. I trust Him.

  7. Sarah Askins: Poet-Writer October 15, 2012 at 7:10 am #

    Oh, sweet friend, we love your words and you. Praying for hope, for comfort, for peace.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:08 pm #

      Thank you for your encouragement, your prayers, your love, my friend.

  8. Travis Mamone October 15, 2012 at 7:23 am #

    You can borrow hope? In that case, can somebody lend me some hope for this week?

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 8:50 am #

      I have a little. Hope you find it shared here today. xo

  9. Ed October 15, 2012 at 8:13 am #

    Just the other day I was talking with a friend who is in a really tough spot, and I had the sense that God wanted me to carry his burdens with him, believing where he struggled to find hope and faith. As I accepted that burden to pray with him and for him, I was reminded of the times when I’ve had to come clean about my own fears and shortcomings before friends when I’ve felt completely unable to take another step forward. God somehow uses people who are imperfect, struggling, and even broken to bear one another’s burdens. I don’t think there’s anything special about my faith right now, but God has called me come alongside someone who needs support, and so I say yes and wait for God to carry both of us. I have no idea how it all works.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:12 pm #

      “I say yes and wait for God to carry both of us. I have no idea how it all works.” Well, friend, I think maybe you do.

  10. Alece October 15, 2012 at 8:20 am #

    you are being held. and you aren’t alone. not ever.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

      That’s being proved. Thank you, friend.

  11. Suzannah October 15, 2012 at 8:27 am #

    love you, lady. we do borrow hope, don’t we? so glad you have folks shouldering this burden and shining a Light.

    this reminds me of that old caedmon’s call song:

    It’s like that long Saturday between death and the rising day
    When no one wrote a word, wondered, is this the end
    But You were down there in the well, saving those that fell
    Bringing them to the mountain again

    Though I’m down in the valley, dying of thirst
    When I’m down in the valley, it seems that I’m at my worst
    My consolation is that You baptize this Earth
    I’m down in the valley, valleys fill first

    love and peace, friend.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:17 pm #

      Thank you for sharing those lyrics and for the song earlier. There’s something about music that helps like nothing else can, some way it reaches into the deepest places.

  12. Kelly October 15, 2012 at 8:35 am #

    Funny, reading your words gives me hope. Because sometimes lately a “red dress” is the only thing pulling me back to the sanctuary, and talking at God is all I can manage too; somehow his voice that is supposed to comfort scrapes a raw ache.

    but your rawness is beautiful. thank you.

    • Tamara October 18, 2012 at 8:43 pm #

      That it encourages you encourages me– thank you, Kelly. And I hope you’ll keep talking at God, trusting that the ache He brings will turn out to be one of healing.

  13. Hazel Lunardo October 15, 2012 at 9:35 am #

    Love can hurt, love can be healing, love can sustain you. My love for you is everlasting and I send it to you. As Grandpa aleays said, “keep the faith”.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

      I am humbled and grateful to come from you both, to inherit your faith, to receive that abundant love. I love you, Grammie, always and so much.

  14. ro elliott October 15, 2012 at 10:31 am #

    so sorry for you pain…thanks for these words…for sharing your raw heart…and reminding me…how we can breath some oxygen…some hope into a space where someone feels they are suffocating. May you feel God’s arms of Love holding you tenderly and tightly.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

      Thank you. Yes, that’s how it feels– breath infused where there’s been suffocation.

  15. HopefulLeigh October 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm #

    Oh, friend. Sending much love and yes, hope, to you. You’ve been on my mind lately and now I know why.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

      Thank you for keeping me on your heart, my friend.

  16. Sarah H. October 15, 2012 at 12:52 pm #

    What can I say — me, the one always wanting to help and fix and solve? So I’m trusting Him too. Maybe it’s all we can both of us do, and all we need to.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:21 pm #

      You’re here and you love me. That’s enough.

  17. Tracie October 15, 2012 at 1:39 pm #

    Borrowed hope is a beautiful thing. As are the friends who share it with open hands and hearts.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:22 pm #

      They really are. Beautiful and precious.

  18. daring October 15, 2012 at 2:35 pm #

    I know that I don’t know you… but somehow I feel that I do. My heart is weeping for you as tears leak down my face. What beautiful heart rending words… words that so startlingly portray where I am at…I am sorry… I am praying… borrowing hope is allowed… such powerful words…
    Reminds me of that scene in Lord of the Rings as they are so very near the end but it seems they are so very near their own death… overcome with exhaustion and despair Frodo just can’t go on anymore and Sam, dear Sam, tells him “Come on, Mr. Frodo. I can’t carry it for you… but I can carry you!”
    May the Lord send someone to carry you.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:24 pm #

      I’m so sorry you’re in the darkness too. Be carried by the words here, by the people who would love you best if you let them into it with you, by the One who holds us perfectly.

  19. Margaret October 15, 2012 at 3:36 pm #

    You are loved, Tamara! I bet you looked beautiful in that red dress :)

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:26 pm #

      Thanks. I kinda did. ;) And God can do all sorts of things with a vain chick who’s willing to show up for the most trivial of reasons.

      • Miles O'Neal October 15, 2012 at 11:40 pm #

        He’ll do pretty much anything to get time with you. He showed up over and over and over when I walked away into drugs and the whole hippie lifestyle. It was both comforting and terrifying. Why terrifying? Because I had tried to divorce myself from that love. Eventually, I gave in…
        Perfect love casts out fear. Praying you are so wrapped and filled with love that there’s no room for anything else.

        • Tamara October 16, 2012 at 5:18 pm #

          Thank you for that prayer, Miles, and for the reminder of His pursuing love. It scares me, but I know it’s good.

  20. Julie October 15, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

    I am here to help carry you, my love. <3

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

      I know, Mom. Thank you. I’ll let you; you’ve always carried me with tender arms.

  21. Diana October 15, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

    Beautiful words, Tamara, even though they tell such a hard, true story of right now. Yes, you can borrow hope. In fact, you can keep it, honey. Here. Take what you need.

    I love you, dear Tamara. And I have missed you.

    • Tamara October 15, 2012 at 6:29 pm #

      Thank you, Diana, for the patient, gentle reminders that what I do matters, that who I am matters.

  22. Amy Young October 15, 2012 at 7:26 pm #

    And this, this is what the body is to be. Thanks for taking the risk to let us know.

    • Tamara October 16, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

      Yes, it is– love in action, sharing the yoke.

  23. Anita October 16, 2012 at 10:39 am #

    This is me, and you’ve given me perspective. Thanks!

    • Tamara October 16, 2012 at 5:20 pm #

      I’m sorry you know this darkness, too, Anita. But you’re right that we’re not alone, and that helps somehow, doesn’t it?

  24. Anita October 16, 2012 at 10:41 am #

    This is me that you’ve written about. It’s good to know we’re not alone. Thanks!

  25. Dan McM October 16, 2012 at 10:25 pm #

    There’s an old somewhat hokey hymn (alright… pretty much completely hokey)that says “I’m so glad I’m a part of the family of God”, and one of the verses says that “when one has a heartache, we all share the tears”. It’s a beautiful thing when we get to see that in action: you were hurting and the body – His body – came together and supported you. Because you are loved, and you are not alone.

    Beautiful post here, Tamara. Thanks for sticking your heart out there – open, vulnerable, raw and honest. It’s odd how sharing your pain brings encouragement to others, but it does just that.

    Thanks for being who you are….

    • Tamara October 18, 2012 at 8:46 pm #

      It was humbling to be the author without answers, but what a blessing it’s brought– I feel so supported and surrounded, even by people I don’t know. And that’s such a tremendously beautiful, mysterious part of being in that family of God.

  26. Laura October 19, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

    As much as Christian music can suck at times, this song seems appropriate.

  27. Julie Anne October 20, 2012 at 8:18 pm #

    These words have sat open on my screen all week and I’ve returned to them a time or two, wanting to comment but unable to find the words.

    HOPE … I love this all and may borrow a little hope for myself!!

  28. Chelsea Rae November 7, 2012 at 11:49 pm #

    These words are so honest. Heartbreaking and life giving at the same time. Thank you for being so vulnerable. I believe that many, many people feel or have felt what you described here, but are unable to admit it. So I commend you!

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