HOPE: the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best
Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
We spend a lot of our lives looking for HOPE. We have a president that ran a rather simplistic campaign promising HOPE to the battered nation. We look for better jobs, better homes, even better churches all looking for a different HOPE. The American Dream (although changing more and more) is based on HOPE. Hope for a better tomorrow.
I would argue that much of the “Green” movement is based on fiscal policy but the spin that we hear from media and politicians is that we need to build more HOPE for future generations. Although some would abuse the idea of HOPE… we need HOPE.
A good HOPE leaves us healthy and vibrant, ready to take on the world. If we have no HOPE then we face a dismal reality.
We tend to take comfort in these verses thinking we can identify with the key signposts on the road to HOPE.
Suffering – We are suffering after all (excuse the McDonald’s wrappers and empty Starbuck cups) and the mounds of entertainment that we burn through in a day, a week, a month, a year.
Endurance – We can make it to the next paycheck! We have suffered and now we must endure. Little Johnny doesn’t have the latest game for his Gameboy. We are building up endurance for when we can choose to afford it.
Character – Our reputation is as flippant as the next tweet or facebook post that comes down the line. Our Character used to be terms on a hand shake. Now we change our contracts and change our minds so often pages have to be written to protect the “character” …
Hope – We hope we are doing the right thing. Close our eyes and HOPE we are doing what GOD wants us to do, ministering to who GOD wants us to minister to, giving like God wants us to give.
I am afraid, afraid we have lost sight of what God wants us to have in these verses. We need to look deeper at the first part of these verses
Through Him – Christ alone gives us Hope
Access – We can approach God knowing that Christ has made a way for us to be able to speak to him.
By faith – Hope that is healthy is hope that is built on faith that God will do what he says he will do and he is faithful to do it.
Grace -Ephesians 2:8 says it best “For by such grace you have been saved through faith. This does not come from you; it is the gift of God” it is this grace that is not something we have contrived, this is not something last minute that God was taken by surprise. Grace a gift from God.
Stand – When we stand where God wants us to stand we will find Hope.
Rejoice – Hard to rejoice when we have trials and tribulations but it is still a command we are given and an attitude that we must CHOOSE to embrace. The glory MUST belong to the Lord. We must not sit and wallow in self pity and shame, we must rise up and rejoice that our King is the HOPE for all.
So … where does your hope come from?