Friday, 9 September 2016

I'll Take Hope

Proverbs 14:32 The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.

      John Maxwell said, "Where there is no hope in the future, there is no power in the present."
      Without hope, our faith will not work. Gal. 5:5 For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. Without hope, our love will be weak and insipid in ourselves and toward others. Hope gives us the strength to move towards our future with an anticipation of God's blessing in our lives. 
      Hal Lindsey has stated, “Man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, about eight minutes without air...but only for one second without hope.” I am not sure of the accuracy of the statement but I do believe the value of what is being expressed. Without hope, we can become quite morose about life and living it. 
      The Psalmist encourages us to hope in God and overcome the depressions and failures of life that can sometimes overtake a person's heart and mind. Psalm 42:5 Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance. We are encouraged to magnify the solution with hope in our heart and shrink the problem by hoping in the Lord's grace for victory in all the battles taking place in our life. Titus 3:7 That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
     I was talking with someone who had been given a new prescription for an ailment that was not getting better. The old pill was not having the desired affect. I found it interesting that the person had a lot of hope in the new pill. They had read some favorable results about this new product and was putting their faith in the possible cure that might happen. 
      Is this not what we, as Christians, are expected to do in Christ? We come to the Lord in prayer and through His word God gives us a new prescription so to speak. We begin to have hope in the word God gave us and we get new life with a stronger faith from the Scriptures God opened to us in our heart. Suddenly our faith begins to grow and manifests blessed results and we are shouting praises to our God for the victory or the cure to the problem that has now been overcome. 
      It was hope in the love of God that brought us to Him in prayer. It was God's love for us that gave us hope to come to Him with our request. As often said, "Hope springs eternal." Rom. 5:5 And hope makes not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
      There is a sense of hopelessness in the world today. This statement was echoed by John Maxwell who said there does not seem to be much hope for the future and therefore no ability to do anything about it. This often creates despair, worry and a life with no expectations in it. Yet even in the harshest of times the power of hope is often found in the most terrible situations and places. 
      Some of the harrowing survival stories in the Nazi concentration camps can bring shivers up our spine from both sides of the atrocity. The pure and evil length to which man can go to brutalize another human being, but so courageous actions of those who found hope in these man-made places of hell. 
      I heard the account of a woman who had found out her husband was still alive in another concentration camp. Somehow she managed to get a written note to him and got one back from her husband. This gave them both the hope, courage, strength and ability to survive the horrors and brutalities of the camps. Somehow hope had made its way into their hearts and they purposed in their hearts to come out alive for each other. 
      Lord, may I have that kind of love for my wife when I feel I have been slighted in some way by something she said. May I have that kind of grace and courage in my marriage. 1 Pet. 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.
       Unlike the lost of the world, Christians have an eternal hope within our hearts and lives. We do not have to fear death because the mercy of God has been poured out on us through the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus. Prov. 14:32 The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death. The word hope in this proverb means refuge. A place to hide and be protected. Hope in God is a safe place. Psalm 33:18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy. 
      The world system is advertising twenty-four-seven trying to get us to hope in their products and wares, but as so many of you know, it is a dead-end street. Hope is not a last attempt at making it through; like I'm hoping-and-a-praying for something - anything will happen. No saints, hope, like love, has no torment. Hope causes our faith to grow and boil-up into believing and trusting God's will for our lives. 
      As for me, I'll take hope and grace into my prayer times with the Lord and will allow my faith to become active in this hopeless world. May we all grow in the hope God has put within us through Jesus our Lord. Rom. 15:13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost. Hope in the Lord and He will lift you up.

2 comments:

  1. Thanks Norm! I like the picture of hope being a place of refuge. We are refugees, but we are not fleeing from something, we are running towards hope.

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    1. Thanks Doug
      As the old song says, "My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness.

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