Caged In Despair

You’re trapped.

Being alone in a cold, dark cell is not where you thought you’d be. You don’t know how you ended up in here, but it’s obvious that there’s nowhere to go. The only place you can go to are the reminders of your failures and disappointments. In this place, the negative and disparaging thoughts seem audible like whispers attempting to convince you that you are never going to leave this place. You say to yourself, “I cannot see my circumstances changing. There is no way that I will ever get out of this. I guess I’m meant to stay here forever in this place.”[1]

No hope.

Believe it or not, it’s quite common to believe this when we think about a situation we are facing. Perhaps we haven’t seen the results we are looking for. What we thought should come to pass hasn’t happened yet. Even years have gone by and we still do not see that what we long for. The lack of hope can cage us into our fears, doubts, and feelings of purposelessness, even to the point of no return.

Yet when it comes to the cage… who put us in there?

Was it God? Was it Satan? Or was it ourselves?

Naturally, it’s easier to blame difficult circumstances as to why we are in the cage of despair. There are those who mistreated us, hostile environments that we didn’t sign up for, and unfavorable situations that seem to come upon us. While these are reasons to throw us into a hopeless state, we have the power to determine if trying and dramatic occurrences will keep us trapped and caged.

That’s why we need to have hope because of the power it has to free us from captivity.

“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” – Psalm 43:5

“And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” – Romans 5:5 (NASB)

Hope is the key that will set us free. Hope in the Lord is fire that kindles our faith, even if we cannot see the outcome we want yet! (Hebrews 11:1) As mentioned in the Scriptures above, we hope in God for His nature is such that He will not leave us in our misery or desolation. He has a purpose in getting us through the discouragement and disillusionment we face.

You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in your Word. – Psalm 119:114

Did you catch that? We hope in the Scriptures, the Word of God.  While we may feel trapped in a certain area of our life, we turn to the Bible and ask: “What specific promise of God is given to help me through this?”

·      If you are feeling alone or isolated, you turn to Hebrews 13:5 – “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

·       Trapped in feelings of unworthiness not loved? Romans 8:38-39 has the answer: “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

·      Do you believe you cannot escape the prison of difficult circumstances? Remember this promise: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). He will get you through!

The reality is this – you might feel stuck in a cell, but there is a way out. Don’t give up and don’t give in! God has given you a certain hope – that hope which is found in His promises are sure to get you through whatever you are facing. You are not meant to be a prisoner, you are a child of God that is meant to be free! Shake off the despair, take the key of hope, and open up the prison door to freedom. Take it, it’s yours!

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” – John 8:36


[1] Inspired by John Bunyan’s aged old classic, “Pilgrim’s Progress” 

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