By Pastor Bayless Conley
One of the most desperate feelings in life is when it seems like all hope is lost. On the other hand, even a little hope is a powerful force that can make the worst of situations bearable. Just a ray of hope can buoy the heaviest soul.
God looks over our world and sees a world filled with hopeless people wandering in darkness and in desperate need of the hope that Jesus brings. Broken and shattered lives that He wants to make new.
You see, God is in the business of making something new out of what is hopeless and broken. In fact, we are told in 2 Corinthians 5:17,
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
That’s a powerful word of expectation… especially to someone who has lost all hope and sees only darkness and despair. My life is a testament to this truth.
While I was not raised in a Christian home, mine was a good family. But I started to wander as a young kid, drinking heavily. In fact, by seventh and eighth grade I was showing up at school drunk in the morning. I’d get up an hour early just to drink a bottle of wine by myself and go to school that way.
Eventually, I ended up on drugs and things went from bad to worse. After I graduated from high school, I moved here and there, working various jobs… all the while, my drug addiction got worse.
Finally, I came to my senses and decided to leave Southern California and get away from my friends, and there would be no more drugs. So I moved up to Oregon.
But on the first day there I met a drug dealer I knew from Long Beach, and we went out and got high, and, well, things really went off the rails from there.
It’s a miracle, actually, that I lived long enough to get saved, as I had lots of near-death experiences.
I was in my twenties but had never heard the Gospel. No human being had ever told me the story of redemption; no human being ever told me Jesus Christ was alive; no human being ever told me the story of salvation.
Until one day when I met a 12-year-old boy. And for the first time, somebody told me about Jesus. At that moment, everything changed for me. I went from hopeless to hopeful, and from spiritually dead to alive like never before!
I’m a living testimony to the fact that however dark your situation may seem, there is always hope because Jesus can redeem it. That means no matter how lonely you are… how hurt you feel… or how desperate your circumstances, you can find hope for your darkest days in Jesus Christ!
Read more of Pastor Bayless’ story in his book, There Is Always Hope. Visit www.AnswersBC.org to request your copy.