Posted by & filed under Discovering Hope.

HOPE.

It’s something we all need and long for.  Like a cool drink of water on a hot summer day.  Like an oasis in a desert wilderness. Like an IV in an Intensive Care Unit.  Like a Miracle in a Sea of Impossibility.

I don’t know, Lord…  Sometimes, when I look too much at the world’s latest news, I wonder if HOPE isn’t playing a cynical game of “Hide & Seek.”  As if HOPE is hiding so well in our day, even it can’t remember where it can be found.642-737 dumps

It’s in moments like these that You remind me, Lord — in Your ever-so-gentle, ever-so-compelling way — that whenever I think HOPE must be hiding, it’s really me… looking in the wrong place.

“Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my HOPE comes from Him.  Truly He is my Rock and my Salvation; He is my Fortress, I will not be shaken.”  (Psalm 62:5-6)

Maybe that’s where the popular (predominant?) belief about the Rapture came from — the belief that those of us who belong to You will be taken out of the world before the really difficult days You foretold in Revelation begin.  Perhaps this belief is true.  (My understanding of Your Word does not support this, Lord… but that’s another discussion for another day).

But the Truth for all of us, right now, is that we all face really difficult days.  This, too, You foretold, Lord… even as You gave The Reason we can always have HOPE, no matter what.

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”  (John 16:33)

Your enemy would tempt us to believe that HOPE can be found only in our escape or rescue from hardship or danger.  But You demonstrated to us a far greater HOPE… didn’t You,210-060 pdf Lord?  One that is forged, like steel, in refining fires.  Fires that burn off what cannot last.  Fires that reveal what cannot perish.

“And we boast in the HOPE of the glory of God.  Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, HOPE.  And HOPE does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, Who has been given to us.”  (Romans 5:3-5)

Lasting, battle-tested, soul-lifting HOPE is not found in escape or rescue from hardship or danger.  Such HOPE is found when You draw near and show Yourself mighty on our behalf, Lord… right in the midst of hardship and danger.

The HOPE You offer us is not “wishful thinking”… is it, Lord?  It is a God-inspired desire combined with the expectation of (or belief in) the fulfillment of that desire.   It’s what we can grab hold of — and what will grab hold of us — not because of the worthiness of the desire, but the Trust-Worthiness of the Desire-Giver.  The One Who delights in keeping every Promise You have made… even against all odds, in the midst of “impossible” circumstances. The only One Who can calm any storm, yet Who sometimes chooses to lead us into storms so You can calm us with supernatural peace that defies our circumstances.

“Now faith is confidence in what we HOPE for and assurance about what we do not see.”  (Hebrews 11:1)

“We have this HOPE as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.”  (Hebrews 6:17-19a)

So what should we HOPE for in these increasingly treacherous days?  That’s the wrong question… isn’t it, Lord?  The real question is:  “WHO will we HOPE in?”  The answer to that question will govern our present and our future — our Fast-Fleeting Present and our Forever-Enduring Future.

“But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the HOPE of salvation as a helmet.  For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:8-9)

“Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their HOPE in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their HOPE in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.  Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.  In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”  (1 Timothy 6:17-19)

Joyful in HOPE,

Abba’s Girl

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