Hope for the Hurting

ocean3Dear Silent One,

I see you, tucked in the corner battling for obscurity. Defending yourself from life’s pain. Afraid to trust. Afraid to feel. But I also recognize that craving in the deep recesses of your heart, the place you won’t let others see.

My heart is pierced with your longing to be heard, valued, understood, and appreciated. Actually, I fashioned you that way. It warms my heart to see that desire stirring within you.

I must tell you, though, short of the acceptance and love and worth that I have designed for you, your soul will always feel deprived like a kid stuck in an empty pool, always waiting, wondering, wishing someone would come along and give you the water you need to have fun. To be full. To feel alive.

It’s time to stop hiding. To venture forth. In spite of what’s happened to you, there are good, godly people who long to help. Who can help. People waiting to pour into you the very resources I have implanted within them. You cannot move into the abundant joy-filled life I have designed for you without these relationships. Within healthy community, you will grow strong and heal. You will learn to use your voice; you will become a silence-breaker.

If you cannot bring yourself to trust them, you must trust me. Will you trust that I have good things in store for you? Hope-filled, purpose-laced days are ahead. Complete restoration, redemption, and a future of success await; it’s time to move beyond this pain.

Let’s dive deeper. I promise the adventure is worth the risk. Allow me to lead you to others who will love you through this pain. Yes, I am doing something new but in the midst I will love you and comfort you. I promise. And in the end, I will make you whole.


(Eph 4:15-16, Jer 29:11-13, Is 43:19,Is 66:13,1Thes 5:23-25 )

P.S. We’d love to know your thoughts; be sure to share in the comments section below. This month we will draw TEN winners from our commenters and the winners will receive one of these two  books, Hope for a Hurting Heart or To Let You Know I Care by our featured author this month, Cheryl Karpen


Jo Ann Fore is an author, teacher, book-freak, and fun friend. She is passionate about making a difference in the lives of women. Most noted for her authentic vulnerability, Jo Ann captivates her audience with faith-filled messages caramelized with a powerful promise of hope. She is the founder of the Write Where It Hurts community, where she is honored to spend her days in the midst of women who seek hard after God’s plans for their lives.

71 thoughts on “Hope for the Hurting

  1. Oh, that we would readily embrace this precious hope He offers us! Beautifully worded, as always, Jo Ann. I love your heart for the hurting. I pray you are blessed as you reach out to rescue His daughters.

    • Thank you sweet friend…my prayer is that we (including me) would get this. Really get this. Tuck it deep into our hearts and hold it there. Allow it to wage war against anything that threatens to keep us from healing community.

    • Oh how I love when God stirs our hearts!! If you’re anything like me Althea, God has to tell me over and over and over before I actually digest it. Wink. Praying for smooth digestion and practical application for you over there 🙂

  2. Jo Ann, your beautiful words were like a breath of fresh air! This is exactly what our hurting world is yearning for. You so graciously provided them a purposeful message filled with hope and trust.

    • Thank you sweet friend for your kind words. You are such an encourager and an encouragement to me and countless others! I cannot wait to see what God is stirring in your own words.

    • Thank you Carol Anne! You are awesome. And I am sad to say I won’t be there next week :(. My first miss in four years, and it’s going to hurt. But it is what it is supposed to be. Have a grand time for me; I pray the Lord moves mightily.

  3. Reaching out for community can be one of the most frightening experiences when the enemy has his way…

    These words are exactly why the enemy cannot and must not have his way…

    God’s way is the only way to receive all He has for us…and His people, the relationships HE provides are the catalyst and comfort as we journey through this fallen world…

    I can no long imagine life without this family God has provided me. period. truth. we are not alone.


    • We. Are. Not. Alone. Yes, Kayla, we are not alone–that we would hold to that truth when the pain threatens to isolate, to break us down. I pray (for each of us) strength and willingness to keep a watchful eye for the person God intends to bring hope to our hurting hearts. A friend of mine, Lucille Zimmerman, has a saying: “It is in community we were hurt; it is in community we will be healed.” We cannot let the pain keep us from healing relationships.

  4. Beautiful post, Jo Ann. How grateful I am for God’s truth and promises. There is no pain too deep, no trauma too difficult for God to heal. I’m using my voice and blog to spread His word! Thank you for sharing the amazing blessings of our Amazing God!

    Love to you, precious friend!

    • I thank GOD for your voice, Lisa! You, my friend, are a prime example of the type of community that God has in store for those open to healing relationships. Your words, and your heart, oft pour healing balm into the rawest of wounds. I love you.

  5. What a beautiful and comforting letter! I have been learning that if I don’t trust those around me, I can still trust God with the situation. And with Him, anything is possible.

  6. Thank you once again for your encouraging words. Speaking for myself, some pain is hidden because of shame or guilt. I appreciate the encouragement to open myself to help and comfort from others. We all experience pain in some form or fashion and another’s testimony can be a blessing.

    • Patricia,

      Thank you for speaking up. Actually, you speak for many. Often shame is the thing that keeps us from very thing we need–community and relationship with others. I pray we ALL break through that isolated barrier and open ourselves up to the truth that Jesus has already seen and forgiven all.

  7. I loved this piece, Jo Ann. You are a wonderful writer and the thoughts you shared are needed by so many.
    BTW, when my computer crashed, I lost the copy of the book you had sent me. If you can resend it, I think it’s okay now. Or I’ll just buy a hard copy soon. Is it available on Kindle? Waiting to hear from you after Mother’s Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love you enormously. I never win anything but I left a comment anyway. LOL!

    • Hey sweet friend,

      Thank you for your encouragement. And no problem on sending out another copy of the book. Just glad your computer is up and running again.

      Much love!

  8. Hi Jo Ann: Thank you for making the love of God so clear to those reading. I haven’t had “horrible” things happen to me, but things that have not allowed me to really trust others like I used to…which is ok as long as I am going to trust God with all my heart. Community is very important and those that are outpouring the love of God will be able to draw others closer to God as well. The more I trust the more peace and comfort I receive and that is a huge part of making me whole. Thanks!

  9. The second to last paragraph has knocked the wind out of me!

    If you cannot bring yourself to trust them, you must trust me. Will you trust that I have good things in store for you? Hope-filled, purpose-laced days are ahead. Complete restoration, redemption, and a future of success await; it’s time to move beyond this pain.

    I don’t have the words to describe…yet. Someday…but not at the moment.

  10. Ok…I am really in tears now. This is exactly where I am.

    Thank You for the article Jo Ann and Lisa.


    Dolores E. Green

    • EVA! I love seeing you here with us…thank you for coming, and for your kind words. I love you precious friend,; we could learn a lot from your beautiful broken heart. Come around more often?

  11. Thank you so much for being obedient to the Holy Spirit in writing this…..such a message of hope and love. It was exactly what I needed at this moment in time. May God bless you!

    • Praise HIS Name that He knew the words that would bring encouragement into your heart Rosemary. I pray restoration and comfort, joy and peace, community and healing for you.

  12. Oh, sometimes I just want to hide. Other times I am so depressed and cannot drum up energy to take that next step forward. When my thoughts return to you, oh Lord, then I get recentered. Sometimes the situation and circumstances feel so out of my control, that I feel like I am sinking, weighted down by hundred pound weights from which I cannot break free. I just want to hide in my closet ( or stay in bed and never get up). But Lord, I am trusting you. You are wiser than I am. You know the beginning and the end. And if you can create a duck- billed platypus, then I can trust that you have plans and a purpose for me.
    Ps 27. You are my light and salvation. Of whom will I fear..

    • Amen Sarah, and his plans are surely unfathomable for what He has in store! For each of us. I pray that your thoughts stay focused on Him, that He will be your centering point . I am adding you to our prayers this moment 🙂

  13. ” Hope-filled, purpose-laced days are ahead. Complete restoration, redemption, and a future of success await; it’s time to move beyond this pain” This is the statement that hit home. I was married 23 years, he left 3 years ago. In Sept of 2010 I met a wonderful man. We were engaged to be married. On April 23, he took his own life. The pain of his past and the stresses of his business were too much for him. I am so broken. Have felt hopeless. He DID come to know Christ in February! He was like a wounded soldier, who needed rest in Christ’s arms. Yet, my arms feel so empty. I will wait for restoration.

    • Amber,

      Your losses took my breath for a second. I can only imagine how it must be difficult for you to even breathe some days. At times like this, words seem mere platitude I’m sure. But I sincerely pray that your empty arms find their way to the One, the only One, who can completely fill them. A stage of grief is both necessary and healthy and I pray that you allow yourself to grieve these losses as that is a part of being able to move into the future God has.

      Know that I am here praying, as one who deeply cares.

  14. Powerful powerful truths you have spoken from the heart of God to each of us reading the words.
    Blown away…just lows away by God’s timing with this piece.

    Love you!

  15. Thank you God for directing me to this site! Thank you JoAnn for being His servant. Your words which are His words have spoken to my soul. The tears have stopped for now, I am in the process of surrendering again and trusting again. I woke up this morning feeling the weight of my family on my shoulders but through my tears I surrendered it all to Jesus, our Lord, for He called the weary and heavy laden to come to Him. Now it’s almost noon and as I was crying out for His peace I was led here. Thank you.

    • Praise HIS holy name! Thank you Lisa for seeking us out. I am always encouraged when God uses us somehow to pour healing words into the hearts of others. I pray He continues to soothe your pain, wipe away the tears, and move you forward into His plans.

      Much love,
      Jo Ann

  16. Jo Ann, this is so lovely. And needed. I am so glad I get to know you. Just reading the comment above mine here from Lisa makes my day. Keep up the beautiful work. You shine. Heather

  17. Joann, I just began writing a memoir blog a couple of weeks ago and a friend told me about you and your website today. I can’t believe I didn’t know about you. Thank you for your wonderful words of encouragement! It took many years before I believed that this is how God feels about me…yes me! Thank you again.

    • Hi Linda,

      Thrilled to connect. So glad God led you to us. There are some really neat women within our community. I do hope you will spend some time with us, visit often, and connect with us heart to heart.

      Rich blessings,
      Jo Ann

  18. Just recently discovered your website, LOVE, LOVE, the idea of writing through the hurt.

    I am in that silent corner, battling for obscurity much of the time, hoping others won’t know the truth, clinging to the jagged edges, climbing, but always slipping back into the grasp of depression, silently hoping to find a way out, hoping, praying to keep that tiny thread of hope alive. 22 years in my own black hole, that tiny thread seems so very, very worn and frayed so much of the time. Moments of joy, my husband, my kids, make me want to keep holding on. Wishing to find the courage to immerse myself back into life, back to church, back to being who God wants me to be, but not quite being able to get there, to do it, silently failing my self and God, over and over again……..how to get myself out of the bubble I’ve built around myself, how to find joy in living and in loving and in giving………

    • Tammy,

      I’m thrilled you discovered us! I love how God makes these connections.

      Your pain grieves my heart. God longs for you to be the real you. You’ve tasted the freedom, the authenticity, I hear it in your words. Please come and connect with us in the prayer room (http://writewhereithurts.org/prayer-requests/) and allow us to join you in prayer and support you on this journey.

  19. I just dove into the adventure of trust, letting people into the place that *I* live, those hidden corners exposed a very short time ago. I have met some truly Godly loving people. I am growing, healing and learning to LOVE. I am being loved in ways I never thought possible. It’s not easy, but it IS freeing, and it is wonderful.

  20. I have truly been hurting and wandering for almost 3 yrs now trying to figure out what’s going on but at the same time, leaving myself open to the Lord’s will. It has been the longest most grueling trial in my life and I’m 60 yrs old, living for the Lord for 37 yrs. I raised my 3 children by myself from the time they were 3, 7 & 9 after my husband walked out for another woman. My parents were deceased and I had no other relatives. I trust God all those years as they grew up til they graduated high school. They all 3 are now with families and very successful. Two of my children are in church and dedicated to the Lord. I always thought being on my own would be so much easier, but the trials have only been greater with much more intense struggles. I was in a serious car accident in ’98 and have since not been able to keep a job as I had a concussion that really messed up my intelligence and memory. I have prayed and been prayed for but for some reason haven’t been healed. FINALLY, in 2010, I gave up the fight of trying to keep a job. It was so demeaning and rejectful to keep getting let go or trying to fix everything I’d mess up. Since I have been on disability my life seemingly has just fallen apart. I just “knew” at first that the Lord was going to have me now fulltime to use in a ministry and I was free to be flexible. Instead, I have had nothing but struggles and now don’t even have a vehicle to get around. I’m just holding on and waiting to see what the Lord has for me day by day as I give my day to Him the first thing every morning. At this time, I find myself constantly on the computer but hey, it’s giving me the opportunity to minister to MANY on Facebook and to be ministered to. I just long for the Lord’s will and direction in my life and to see what the next moment might hold. Here I am Lord, here I am.

  21. Yes, yes, YES!! God, through community, can and does break the silence! Oh this is my desire for all women and young girls who continue to sit in silence believing the lie that there is no hope!!

    Thank you sweet sister….love your heart

    • Thank you so much for your encouragement, Sharon! Your kind words mean the world and more. Please know that the Write Where It Hurts team is praising God for you. Thank you for taking the time to share your uplifting thoughts with us.

  22. I understand that whole letter, however I went through spiritual abuse for 7 years. I loved God with all my heart when this started happening. I still love Him but I don’t trust anymore. It’s hard now for me to trust people, and to trust God to start over again. I have been completely alone in this for 7 years. I try to trust but when a man of God abuses you, it can really baffle your world.
    I don’t know how to start.

    • I’m in the same boat as Carol. Spiritual abuse makes trusting God difficult. He is the answer, but He is also (from my perspective/reality) part of the problem. He didn’t help when Christian leaders were abusive…how can I turn to Him in trust and dependence and expect that next time He will make a difference? I hate being isolated from God, but I just can bear to be that disappointed again if He remains silent and unhelpful in the face of abuse. The knowledge that this is somehow my wrong understanding adds to my guilt and shame, but isn’t enough to enable me to let go of fear and let down my guard.

    • Sweet friends, I won’t pretend to know your pain. We each have different experiences, and respond to the traumas of this life in unique ways. I do, however, know the pain of betrayal by believers. We think they should be above that; we think they should be the last people in the world we have to mistrust. How our humanness can be maligned by the Enemy of our souls and turned against our brothers and sisters! That Enemy is alive and well, and sadly he is a pro at using God’s own people against one another. And yes, there are those who masquerade as His children who are wolves strategically sent to harm the sheep. We do have to be discerning, but God does not want us closed off to trust. This is a work God is doing in my own heart, if I’m being completely transparent. I truly feel what you are saying.

      One thing we have to remember is that we cannot possibly know the mind of God. When Job had finished his lamenting, God asked him some very humbling questions, like, “Where you when I formed the earth?” Job realized in short order that although he thought he had a handle on God’s purposes and will, he really knew only a minuscule amount about all God had in mind. His ways are so much higher than ours.

      So what do we do? We never forget that although people are going to betray us, God does not leave or forsake. He doesn’t leave us physically (“leave”), or emotionally (“forsake”), even though in our human understanding we think He has left us hanging. Please hear my heart, sweet sisters: We cannot possibly fathom God’s divine purpose in what He allows us to endure. One thing we do know: He will ALWAYS use what happens for our good, for our growth, for our refining (Romans 8:28). We can count on that. We simply have to trust that the Lover of our souls, the Creator of our entire being, body, mind, and spirit, will redeem every single thing that happens in this life, and that He will return beauty for ashes in ways we could not have imagined.

      I love you. And He loves you far more that that. As the Write Where It Hurts team, we are lifting you up in prayer. Please know that we don’t take lightly that you come here to open your heart to us and to read ours through our words. You are treasured, by Him and by us.

      I leave you with this, from my heart. http://writewhereithurts.org/2012/02/trampled-roses/

  23. Searching for Hope and discovered your page. Truly wonderful. You knew just what I needed to hear. Can feel God reaching out for me through your writing. Thank you.

    • You couldn’t have given us a higher compliment, sweet friend. May God bless you for your kindness. Please know that the Write Where It Hurts team loves and appreciates you, and is lifting you up in prayer. Please visit us often. Thank you for walking this journey with us. 🙂

  24. On April 6, 2012, I broke my silence and began to share my childhood sexual abuse story. As I continue to put my Trust in Him, He continues to guide me on my healing Journey. His Love for me is amazing and His Grace is sufficient as I continue to break my silence.
    Thank you for being a Blessing, your website and facebook posts are an encouragement.

    • Denise, your words are a godsend. You can count on the Write Where It Hurts team lifting you up in prayer as you continue to live as a Silence Breaker. The Enemy of your Soul has a plan to discourage you, to stifle your voice, to keep you in despair. The Lover of your Soul has a plan, too, but a plan for life, for hope and a future–and that life is not a silent one. I honor you for your courage in risking yourself, in opening yourself to the elements and trusting God to put everything in its proper place as only He can. And He will honor you in ways no human could, sweet friend. I am delighted for you–and for the world–that you are no longer silent. May He bless you in beautiful ways through this Christmas season and beyond. You are dearly loved.

  25. I have been here, God said all of these words to me years ago.. He brought me love, healing & restoration. He brought Godly people to show me his love & acceptance in flesh form. God saw me in the corner and made sure I didn’t stay there. I now have a voice, He has used my life to speak His love, His truth & His healing into others. I Am a daughter of The King! Thank you for writing the very word that bring life to those who feel death in themselves, your ministry is anointed.

    • Thank you, dear Allison. Please know that we deeply appreciate your encouraging words, and that we are delighted at what God has done and continues to do in your life. You are exactly right–you do have voice, and I applaud your courage to use it to shine His light in a dark world. We are all blessed for your willingness to step out in His name. Know that you are in our hearts and prayers, sweet friend, today and always. We wish you love and continued hope through the holiday season and beyond.

  26. Just now reading this. New to your site. I can so relate to this a year ago. A friend once said to me in , “you are God’s daughter first.” Meaning I had put my self worth in the hands of people and forgot who’s I really am. Thank you for this encouraging place!

    • So glad you’ve found us, Tina! It’s great to have you here. You are right: it is so important to remember Whose we are. Thank YOU for that reminder! Blessings, and happy New Year from all of us here at Write Where It Hurts.

  27. I came to read a post and be entered for the Pink ‘Jesus Calling’… I have been blessed once again by the words I have just read here – as I have with other posts since I discovered your blog a short time ago! – and am Amazed that You have read my mind and written my thoughts… 8-/ …I’ve had a LONG life of Pain, even though I accepted Christ as a child and I KNOW the verses and the way God works…I am just Weary, Alone and Distrusting of people. I am thankful at least for the ‘online community’ I have discovered recently – just wishing it was ‘closer.’ But Thank You for your Words… ;-}

  28. I struggle with trusting God. “Trust” is my word for 2013! So your post was a reminder of what I am working on. There have been times that I have felt invisible. It is a horrible feeling. Now I am blogging, and leading Bible studies. I am taking small steps, and working on my God-sized dream!
    Thanks for sharing your link to this site.

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