Another Glorious, God-GivenTruth: We have the gift of hope in Christ Jesus!
How can we really experience the full meaning of hope with our mere human language? We can’t, really. Yet, even though what we can SAY about hope is certainly not sufficient to fully describe it, we can try to understand aspects of it a little bit better when we talk about and ponder it for a while.
- To desire something with the expectation of obtainment
- To expect with confidence
- To cherish a desire with anticipation
Pretty simple little bullet points to offer a description of something so completely amazing. Yet they are all spot-on.
Look at the strong words utilized here. Desire. Expectation. Cherish.
And the end result: Obtainment.
Those are not feeble things! Each of these descriptors are strong in and of themselves. They conjure up thoughts and feelings that paint a very powerful picture. And they are only the descriptions of this wonderful thing we are talking about…that thing we call “hope”.
Hope is powerful. But what is even more critical is what we decide to place our hope in throughout our lives. That can be something that is as tiny as a mouse, or another thing entirely; one that is so very grand that we cannot even fully soak the whole of it in with just our eyes.
The very nature of living a life of hope is obviously active, not passive. Although many times, the realists out there in our world like to scoff at the idea, having and holding onto hope takes a lot of courage. It takes risk, surrender, motivation, dedication and desire. Especially when one places their hope in that which is unseen in our physical realm.
Yet, that which is unseen is often far more real than the things we can view right in front of us. True hope involves the use of a different kind of vision than what we normally rely upon. Again, we find it to ring true that anything of much lasting value starts within our hearts, and the truth that God has placed there.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is
seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
My Lord in whom I place my hope may not be fully seen with my shabby mortal vision, but I assure you, He is quite real. He is more real and more true than anything else that I ever experienced. Further, everything that I do experience or see I owe to Him…for He is the Author and Creator of all. He paid for my sin on the cross. That too, is quite real.
By cherishing the hope that we have in Christ, and all of the promises He has made to us, we reap blessings we could never even imagine before we accepted Him as the Lord and Savior of our lives!
In His sovereign and merciful grace and power, He has done nothing but strengthen the hope I have in Him, and reveal Himself to me more and more each day. He has brought more conviction, more confidence, more strength, and more joy into my life since I have looked with great expectation towards Him, than I ever thought possible. The hope I have in Him – it is alive. It grows. He is the living water of my life.
HE is my only REAL hope. Hope in Jesus is massive.
Can you imagine, for a moment, the enormity of it all? If we place our hope in Christ, we are blessed even more in return just for doing so. As if having the hope and the promise of salvation and an eternal life with Him weren’t already enough! He wants to shower us with blessing upon blessing too.
These blessings are realities He brings forth in our lives and are too many to be numbered. We certainly can see, hear, feel, touch, and smell them all. This is one of the great and blessed mysteries of our God and His power….that He can translate faith, hope, and belief in Him to very real and tangible things that are a witness of His existence through us for all the world to see.
“He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”” John 7:38
On top of it all, we are given the gift of enjoying things while we live here and await with expectation the day we go home to be with the Lord. The life we have here has been just another one of the Lord’s gifts unto us, and He wants us to enjoy it too. It’s good to hope for some things while we are here on this earth.
- I hope for good health.
- I hope my children will stay strong as they walk through this world.
- I hope that people I care for and love will be comforted through trials, and blessed through joyful experiences.
- I hope my coffee tastes good in the morning, that my hair looks good when I go to work, and that the brand of peanut butter I like to buy is at the store when I get there.
- I hope my husband still thinks I am cute when I am 90.
But as I write this, I realize even more, that these aren’t really things in which I place my “hope”. They are just things that I desire or would like to have….or even think that I need in this life.
It is Him and what He tells me in His word that is truth – and it is in Him and what He tells me in His word that I should place my hope. The hope that HE offers to us is all that we can count upon for all of eternity. Our salvation in Him, the promise that we will reign with Him forever in heaven one day, and the fact that He IS the real way, the real truth, the real love, and the real life? Those are the brilliant nuggets of hope in Him that I cling to in life……and they all spill out and rain down from the magnificent and brilliant God that we are privileged to call our Father.
That is the hope we will see fulfilled that will last forever and ever. That kind of forever feels really good to me. It’s the forever that I plan to live out with my Savior and Mighty King.
“And this world is fading away, along with everything else that people crave. But anyone who does the will of God abides forever.” 1 Jonn 2:17
And the things of this world that aren’t faded yet? Remember to look upon those that are true and lovely, and enjoy them. We just need to remember to focus and keep our vision sharp. There is a lot of false hope out there in our world, so proceeding with caution is a good idea. For what goes along with true hope is trust….which is also something we must do actively versus passively. And placing our trust in the wrong things – the things which are not lasting – making those things our “God” – EVEN the things that seem to be good – well, that can be dangerous if we allow them to be what we look to for purpose and meaning in life.
Lies and deception are a part of reality too. They just aren’t truth. That doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. I assure you, they are very “real.”
I’ve been there…too many times. I have looked far too often to things in this world to fill me up. And I’ve always ended up running on empty. I’ve lost hope in those situations. That doesn’t feel good. Hope is only a good thing if it’s in things that are good for us and will draw us closer to God! Hang my hopes on Him – that’s going to be what I do.
So, my ultimate and overarching hope is in the only One that is fully true. It’s what I have in the Alpha and the Omega….in my Father God, in the Almighty and Great “I AM”, in Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” Revelation 22:13
Christ IS eternity and He IS God. Our Lord will never pass away. God has always been. God is. And God will always be. Hope in that above all else!
And the best news of all, is that by placing our hope in Him above all else, we are assured that we will get to live with Him for all eternity. For He is “Mighty to Save”. Even if we “pass away” from this earthly life before the Lord comes back for His church (which He absolutely WILL do some day), we will live with Him forever in a new life that will never end.
What greater hope could I ever cherish than that? What more could I look forward to with anticipation? And after all of the promises He has made that have come true, how could I not live with the utmost of confidence and expectation that all future promises He has made to me will be fulfilled? I’m certainly not entitled to them in the first place…those promises He makes and fulfills are made out of grace – and because He chooses it – they are made out of God’s love for us.
Although hope in Jesus is a choice, to me, it is not a luxury – it’s an absolute necessity. The gift-aspect of it comes into play in the fact that I could not have the hope I have in the Lord if it weren’t for the fact that He chose to offer it to me.
Thank you, Father God, for being my glorious hope! Thank you for offering Your true and Mighty Self to me. I desire You. I cherish You. And I look forward with nothing but utter and complete anticipation and expectation of obtaining the promise I have in You for all eternity. You have already given me the opposite of that which I deserve. You are my Brilliant Hope.
“Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His glory and grace.” Helen Lemmel