Expectations will crush you.

“If hope is only rooted in an outcome, then your expectations will crush you.” Jay Wolf


I recently saw a new specialist to get a fresh perspective on my chronic pain. I sensed hope rising in my heart as he optimistically explained a treatment unlike any I had tried before.

Not long afterward, I recalled countless other appointments. Each held the promise of relief but failed to deliver. Despite years of medical interventions, my challenges were now worse than ever. Dare I risk disappointment yet again?

After prayerful reflection, I knew the answer was “Yes.” God reminded me that my hope was ultimately in Him, beyond any human wisdom or cure. My days were under His control. He called me to trust in His care and move forward.

Romans 15:13, a favorite Scripture for decades, came to mind with new vibrance:

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

I also recalled a quote from a book titled, “Hope Heals,” by Katherine and Jay Wolf. As a young mom, Katherine suffered a severe, life-altering stroke. In telling the story, her husband Jay observed, “If hope is only rooted in an outcome, then your expectations will crush you.” Regardless of the results, the Lord was asking me to follow His guidance on the path ahead.

Hope that flows from the Holy Spirit holds steady regardless of our circumstances. The words all and abound in Romans 15:13 are especially meaningful. God promises more than just enough to get by, offering an abundance for every place of need.

Over the years, a simple hope acronym has instilled courage when I have wanted to give up:


Clinging to Biblical truth has been vital to my persevering in prayer and awaiting the Lord’s answers.



Chronic Joy’s printable resource, 16 Verses to Ignite Hope, provides tangible help and honest encouragement for the journey of long-term trials:

In the middle of prolonged illness, it can seem like God doesn’t see you. Weakness and stress can make it difficult to hold onto hope … Allow these Scriptures to sink deep into your heart, igniting hope as He carries you. 

I invite you to read the printable and choose verses that resonate with your heart and mind. Write them on note cards and post them where you will see them often as reminders of our steady hope in God.



Gracious Heavenly Father, You know how we struggle to maintain hope as we live with chronic suffering. Repeated disappointment and ongoing pain threaten to mire us in despair. Help us shift our attention away from our troubles and focus on Your truth. Let memories of Your past faithfulness renew our faith for the future. Thank You for Your compassion and help. Amen.


*How is hope impacting your mindset in this life season?

*What aspect of your situation makes it difficult to sustain hope?

*Which of the “Ignite Hope” Scriptures are most relevant to you?

Yellow Bubbles
Lee Ann Zanon

Lee Ann Zanon

Chronic Joy® Staff Writer

Lee Ann is passionate about spreading the truth of Scripture. For decades, she served in various women’s ministry roles (including teaching at Corban University for ten years) until chronic pain dramatically changed her life. Her background as a Bible teacher, retreat speaker, worship leader, editor, and writer has prepared her perfectly for her current focus on writing and providing one-on-one encouragement. Lee Ann and her husband Mike live in Salem, Oregon. They have two married daughters and four grandchildren. She is the author of Honest Hope.

Called to Hope

Called to Hope

Jesus is the enduring, timeless, and everlasting hope who came to seek, serve, call, forgive, rescue, redeem, and save.

Discovering Hope

DISCOVERING HOPE: Beginning the Journey Toward Hope in Chronic Illness

Cindee Snider Re

This 10-chapter study invites participants to experience radical hope and compassionate change in a life with chronic illness.

No matter how dark the days, how wild the storm, how deep the valley, or how long the winter, there is hope.

There is always hope.


Buy from Amazon

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
Skip to content