Greetings and Welcome!
My goal is to share encouragement, grace, and hope from God’s Word, and to brighten your day. Mission trips abroad have enlarged my heart and reminded me once again that regardless of our skin color or location we all need a savior, and His name is Jesus. I pray that my articles will lift your spirits and point you to the One who loves you most.
You are welcome to download a free copy of:
- What Hope Can Do - by Fran Sandin
- 7 Tips For A Lasting Marriage - by Fran Sandin
- So What Happens Next? - Tract written by Steve Sandin
- Walking Through the Fire (a grief recovery article)
- Ten Days of Encouragement (for anyone who is depressed)
- Ten Ways to Say “I Care” (to encourage grieving mothers)
- The Russian version of See You Later, Jeffrey
May God bless you in your journey of faith.
HOPELESS? OR HOPE?
By Fran Caffey Sandin
Do you know someone who needs hope? The Center for Disease Control reports that suicide is the third leading cause of death for youth between the ages of 10 and 24, and results in approximately 4,600 lives lost each year. Deaths from suicide are only part of the problem. More young people survive suicide attempts than actually die. As a teenager Kelly felt so hopeless, she wanted to die and even started cutting her wrists. Here is her story:
“Growing up my dad didn’t give me affection or encouragement at all and expressed anger when I struggled at school. Although I later discovered a learning disability, my dad did not try to help me, and I felt he didn’t even care that I existed. Then I experienced sexual abuse from his father that made me feel unwanted, unloved, and worthless. The guy I dated in high school was jealous, called me horrible names, and was physically abusive. My father ignored my suicide attempts and never even spoke to me about it. I purposefully chose to numb the emotional pain with alcohol, partying, and drugs; and spent as much time as possible with friends who were doing the same, so I didn’t have to be at home. I begged God to take my life, but He didn’t.”
“Actually, I was running away from Him because of the upheaval in my heart. As a child I had attended church, Awanas, and learned Bible verses. God’s Word does not return void. Finally, when I reached my lowest point, I quietly listened to the Lord, and He gave me the opportunity to choose a new life.”
“Jeremiah 29:11 is the verse that I recalled, and it’s because of God leading me to it and my mom’s constant reminding me of it, along with her prayers, that I suddenly realized that His plan was NOT to harm me. ‘For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, not to harm you, to give you a hope and a future.’ I was alone one day when God spoke to me--leading me to surrender to Him and repent. He is the One we can hope in even when things seem hopeless. He is our security, He is love, and He is always with us. From that day forward, I am a different person. I have a new life in Christ and enthusiasm for making Him known.”
For anyone who, like Kelly, may feel hopeless: “Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15: 13 NASB).
Since Kelly surrendered her life to Christ, she has had many opportunities to share her testimony and has even participated in mission trips abroad. She wants others to find the personal relationship with Christ she has experienced in her own life. “I will praise you forever for what you have done; in your name I will hope, for your name is good. I will praise you in the presence of your saints” (Psalm 52: 9 NIV).
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your loving care for us and for chasing us when we try to run away. Thank you for forgiving our rebellious hearts and giving us your power to change. Thank you that you are the God of hope. Help us to be faithful and to share your message of your unconditional love and hope with others. In Jesus’ name. Amen