Hope: The Best of Things
How would we define hope? Hope is defined as the following: Cherishing a desire with anticipation. To want something to happen or be true. To desire with expectation of obtainment or fulfillment. To expect with confidence. Hope is a powerful thing! It is a positive expectation for the future, expecting positive, desired outcomes.
Hope is our anchor. Hope becomes our tent pegs for the future when storms hit us hard. Hope sustains us in the deepest valleys and the darkest moments. The nature of hope, sustained by faith, undergirds our lives with strength and vibrant expectations.
The great preacher Fred Craddock wrote:
“You can put hope in chains and hope will figure a way to drag the chain to an old familiar tune sung by slaves, and start humming.
You can put hope on a pile of sticks and say, “You are to live there.” It will carve one of the sticks into a flute and begin to play.
If you put hope in a cave and say, “You have to live in this cave,” hope will take berry juice and paint pictures on the wall.
You just can’t seem to kill hope.
Hope can live on one calorie a day.”
Hope is a wonderful blessing to those who have faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
“You just can’t seem to kill hope. Hope can live on one calorie a day.” —Fred Craddock
We Need Hope
Hope is important for every believer because of the stresses and struggles that present themselves every day.
What is going on in our world? We see:
- High inflation is dramatically affecting our gas and food prices.
- Lawlessness in our large cities is rampant.
- Levels of disrespect and selfishness abound.
- There is an ongoing attempt to destroy our American culture by activists and politicians.
- We are all exposed to the destructive experiences that ill health and disease may bring.
- The heartbreaking war waged by Vladimir Putin and his armies in Ukraine is before us on the daily media.
Difficulties abound around us every day. Hope is the one major response to the fact that someone greater than our circumstances remains in control.
“Hope is the one major response to the fact that someone greater than our circumstances remains in control.”
The Source of Our Hope
At times, we struggle not to lose hope. Even believers in Christ sometimes struggle here. As shepherds, we should provide encouragement to take heart. We should remind our people of the strong teaching of Scripture when it comes to hope.
David tells us the source of true hope when he states in Psalm 130:7,
“Israel, hope in the Lord; For with the Lord there is lovingkindness, And with Him is abundant redemption.”
Paul in Romans 15:13 reminds us:
“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.”
Hebrews 6:19-20 powerfully reminds us:
“This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”
“This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast.”
As believers in Jesus, knowing our Father is in complete control, we hope in God. Our confidence is not in ourselves, in our wealth, or our surroundings but in the everlasting, eternal promises of our Father.
Our hope is based on these facts:
- God our Father is still on the throne. Nothing happening in our world today is a surprise to Him.
- There have always been times of great stress, struggle, and difficulty in the world and in the lives of believers.
- Our Father continues to be active in the world and is in control.
- Peter tells us, “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul” (2 Peter 2:9-11). In this impacting text, Peter reminds us that we do not belong here forever. He reminds us that we are aliens, strangers, and sojourners on a journey. We are not permanent residents here. This spiritual fact should encourage us and remind us that, whatever we see happening around us, for us it is temporary and not the final experience. As we see events unfold, we realize that we are on our way home to our final destination.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. put it, “But I know, somehow, that only when it is dark enough can you see the stars.”
There are many points of help given to us to assist us on our journey to heaven. Hope is one of the best!
From e2elders.org. Used with permission.