Yet hope returns when I remember this one thing: The Lord’s unfailing love and mercy still continue, fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise. The Lord is all I have, and so in him I put my hope. Lamentations 3:21-24 (TEV)Pain is a natural part of life. We can’t escape it. Broken relationships, missed opportunities and rough seasons will always be with us. When they come, we can either become bitter or hopeful. The choice is ours. The author of Lamentations faced these choices. When this poet’s world came apart, he took the time to write down his thoughts and honest frustrations with God. He didn’t settle into bitterness. After sharing bitter feelings, he wrote: Yet hope returns when I remember this one thing: The Lord’s unfailing love and mercy still continue, fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise. The Lord is all I have, and so in him I put my hope. Even in the midst of terrible situation, a person can change his or her perspective. It’s healthy and good to be honest with God about your feelings, and eventually you have to shift your perspective. As long as your mind is on your pain, you don’t see things clearly. Instead, like this faith-filled writer, you can think about God’s unfailing love and mercy for you. No matter what the problem, no matter how much anger you’ve spewed at God, God still loves you, and that will never change. The longer we focus on a depressing topic, the longer a circumstantial depression will last. Bitterness can seep in and trap you in what otherwise might be a passing pain. Lamentations gives us a simple cure for bitterness: In the midst of a depressing tirade; stop and say to yourself and God, “Yet hope returns…” How can you have hope even on the dark days? Hope returns when you remember that the Lord’s unfailing love and mercy still continue. You can count on that! God’s mercies are as fresh as the morning and as sure as the sunrise. The assurance of God’s love is what you need. Put your hope in him. You’ll never know that God is all you need until God is all you have. Have you been there? Are you there, now? Take heart, because God’s unfailing love will never let go.