The whole of mankind hoped with eager anticipation…awaiting the promise of the fulfillment of the coming Messiah…only to watch Him die a terrible and horrific death on the Cross. The day after that shocking event, the human soul was holding its breath…struggling to remember the words of Jesus while despair tried to crowd out any shred of hope. Human life hung in the balance between hope and hopelessness that fateful day. But God is the God of hope, (Romans 15:13) and we have this hope as an anchor. (Hebrews 6:19) So if today, you’re facing the impossible, the incurable, the irreversible…put your hope in God and fix your eyes on Him. For if God can raise Jesus from the dead, He can breathe life into your sick, dying body, revive a struggling marriage, or break the chains of addiction off a loved one. For as long as there is hope, there’s life.
You will not be able to go through this world without receiving bad news…for loved ones die, accidents happen, and cancer rears its ugly head. So it’s not if bad news will happen, but rather when it will hit us without warning. It’s at that moment we have to make a conscious decision…who and what will I trust in. Will I take this news that’s causing me pain and unhappiness and allow it to control every part of me…or will I stand firm in the confidence of knowing God is in complete control of the situation? Leaning on the Lord is not a sign of weakness…relying on Him for strength and peace is not copping out from reality. Bad news will affect us all…but if our trust is in the Lord, we have the certainty of His firm foundation of love and hope under-girding our shaking bodies.
Wisdom speaks only truth to your soul. It will guide you on the right path, and fill you with hope. And with wisdom comes future hope … that can never be destroyed.
You can’t have faith without hope…and hope without faith…they go hand and hand together. When shattered human emotions come to the point of hopelessness, there’s nothing left but disillusionment and a broken spirit. But if we have faith, we are lifted up and supported…encouraged and assured that God is there. Isaiah 46:4 says, “Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He, I am He Who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” The Lord is always there to comfort the brokenhearted and grief-stricken. For faith will give way to hope…and hope will usher in faith.
The deepest abyss a human can know is to be without hope…and separated from God. For the unbeliever, all hope ends at death…there is nothing else to cling to. And fear manages to erode away at what little time they do have here on earth. Without hope there is only dread and despair…without God there is only emptiness.
What exactly is perseverance, and how do we develop it through exercising our faith? Perseverance is hope under pressure…its not allowing surrender or giving in to trials. Perseverance is the purpose in which we reach the goal of spiritual maturity.
This morning I read a very interesting article in the paper about how dark secrets are impacting many Believers, and the lack of responsiveness from the Church. Many are burdened down with shame, guilt, and the feeling of hopelessness for sins and addictions they feel they cannot talk about, especially in Church. Instead, they allow the silence to bind them up, unable to break free of the secret sin that has them in its grip. But sadly, it’s also the lack of addressing real issues, that has the Church falling short. Jesus never skirted issues…He always called them for what they were. We may think our sin is “secret”…But God sees all, and now is the time to bring the light of His truth into the darkness.