Hope! What is it? How do we get it? How do we give it?
The Bible has this to say:
Isaiah 40:31 “But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”
1 Peter 1:3 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
As some of you may know, I help lead worship at a church for adults with special needs. A few weeks ago, one of our church members defined hope in this way. “Hope is where we find our God in our lives.” Isn’t that profound?
In reading those passages, we can see that hope gives us power, hope is something we can cling to, and, most importantly, our hope comes through the sacrifice of Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection.
While we have plenty of hope for our lives here on earth, our greatest hope is in eternity.
Romans 8:18-25 “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”
The Greek word for hope used in this passage is “elpis.” This word is translated as, “to expect with pleasure, or to be confident in.”
Once we accept Christ as Lord and allow him to rule and reign in our hearts and lives, we can both expect with pleasure and be confident in eternal life.
Believers have an amazing, beautiful hope of heaven. We can look forward to a place where we can be in eternal communion with the one who loves us with an unending love, and who is worthy of all glory, honor, and praise. If we have such a hope, we are obliged to share it with our fellow man.
1 Peter 3:15 “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”
True hope is something that bursts from within you and is noticeable to everyone that you come across. Boldly proclaim that Christ alone is the reason for this hope!
I place my hope in you alone. Help me to always keep my eyes on the place you have prepared for me in heaven. Aid me in living out your great commission, and prepare within me an answer to give whenever I am asked about the hope I have.
In Jesus’ Name,