There’s something about HOPE. It’s a little word with a lot of muscle.
It can make the heart happy.
It can stop sorrow dead in its tracks.
It can give a knock-out punch to despair.
It can bring light into darkness.
It can turn downcast eyes upward.
It can transform what looks like the end into a new beginning.
Hope is an expectation of something good. Where there is hope, there is comfort, even a spark of excitement. You can’t have faith unless you first have hope. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)
In my “Grief Report” post, I made reference to a couple of scriptures that spark hope, then faith in me. Read that post first to get a fuller picture of what I’m talking about here.
Mary and Martha’s brother Lazarus had died by the time Jesus arrived, and they said, If only you’d been here he wouldn’t have died! Jesus told them, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” I’m sure when Jesus said this, hope sprang up in their hearts.
I just love this! In saying “Didn’t I tell you,” He’s basically saying, “Remember what I said? Remember? I told you, if you believe, you will see the glory of God!”
I think this is so relevant to you and me in whatever situation we find ourselves. When we begin to despair, when we begin to lose heart and lose hope, we need to remember what the Word of God (the Bible) says! Jesus is the Word! (John 1:1) Remember what He says! Find out what He has said about your situation.
And I love that Jesus said, “If you believe, you will see the glory of God,” because I believe this is applicable to any promise made to us in the Bible. If you believe, you will see.
Finding out what He has said about your situation brings hope, which is a springboard to faith, which is necessary to please God (Hebrews 11:6). In Romans 4:18, the Bible says that “Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed, and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him.” Abraham in hope believed what God had promised him, and it came to pass!
Another scripture I referenced in “Grief Report” is this: “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” (Psalm 42:5) But as I continue reading into verse 6, it says, “My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember You….”
This excites me! When my soul is downcast and disturbed, I put my hope in God by remembering Him! I remember Him; I remember what He has said to me in His Word. This will give me hope. This will lift my spirits, so to speak.
A few more scriptures about hope:
“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him.” (Psalm 62:5)
“For You have been my hope, O Sovereign Lord, my confidence since my youth.” (Psalm 71:5)
“You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in Your word.” (Psalm 119:114)
And then there is that familiar scripture in Isaiah 40:31 that says “those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength…” The word “wait” actually means to expect, look for, and hope in Him (Amplified Bible).
In Lamentations chapter 3, Jeremiah is recalling much hardness and sorrow in his life, and then says this: “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.’ The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him….” (verses 21-25)
I am so happy about this! Notice that in the midst of his pain, he “calls to mind and therefore has hope.” He remembers something good about God, and this gives him hope! And what’s awesome is that “the Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him.”
I so love what Paul said to the Romans in chapter 15, verse 13: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
What a mouthful! Need hope? He IS the God of hope! And that God of hope will fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with HOPE. How? By the power of the Holy Spirit.
The bottom line is, you can’t do it alone. You can’t live this life alone. You can’t grapple with life’s issues and problems and hard times alone. Well, you CAN, but there’s no hope in it. There’s only despair and a sad end. With God, what looks like the end becomes a new beginning. Darkness turns to light. Downcast eyes look heavenward, where our help and hope come from.