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The Strongest Four Letter Word

“A girl around 7 years old came to a medical clinic we sponsored with the help of a volunteer team from Spartanburg, South Carolina. We found out that her father was an alcoholic who mistreated her mother and her siblings. Most of the time, this little girl was left alone in the house to do all the chores and take care of her brothers and sisters. After she had shared these things, she asked, “Do you have any pills that would give me hope?” (1) – written by a missionary about a little girl from the Caribbean.

I cried this morning as I read these words from my devotional called, “Voices of the Faithful.”

I have had nothing even close to that horrible happen to me, but I can still lose hope some days. How about you?

We live in a very uncertain time in history. Our economy is shaky, the world is in turmoil, sickness and disease are everywhere, and natural disasters are in the news almost daily. Many days life feels hard and cruel, painful and exhausting. Uncertainty is a good word to describe the times we live in. Lately, I have struggled with letting myself become anxious about my future and the future of my family. It leaves me feeling unsettled and it shifts my focus off of God.

I’m so grateful God reminded me this morning where my hope and my confidence should be. I wanted to share what I was reminded of with you, hoping and praying it will encourage your hearts.

Hope in Jesus offers us so many things – here are four that I read about this morning.

1. Hope gives us courage. Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord. – Psalm 31:24 - God is the only sure thing in this world. When this world is uncertain, we can trust in the only One who can guarantee our future.

2. Hope offers us protection and safety. We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. – Psalm 33:20 - You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness, O God our Savior, the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas. – Psalm 65:5 -God is in control of the entire universe and nothing ever surprises Him or takes Him off guard. I find a ton of comfort from that truth.

3. When we have hope, we actually bring delight to the Lord. The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. – Psalm 147:11 - God wants us to depend on Him in everything we do, and He delights in us when we do so.

4. Hope gives us peace and rest. Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him. – Psalm 62:5 - Rest and “quietness of soul” is so hard to come by these days. Do you ever spend a lot of time worrying about tomorrow today? How much energy do you think we waste worrying? When we remember that tomorrow is already taken care of by our Father, we can relax and find peace in our hearts and minds today.

We can have confident hope in our God. He will never let us down or fail us. We can fully trust God, even (and especially) when it doesn’t make sense. One of my favorite verses:

Those who hope in him will never be disappointed. – Isaiah 49:23

When we have hope, it changes everything. When we lose hope, it makes our hearts sick and our enemy gains the victory. Let’s never let our enemy win in this area. It is dangerous ground and I believe it’s where he attacks us most viciously.

And when God reminds us of the hope we have in Him, let’s pass it on to others. Giving hope to others is a priceless gift to both them and us.

Put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with Him is full redemption. – Psalm 130:7 (emphasis mine)

Unfailing love.
Full redemption.

I can’t think of anything that offers more hope than that. Let’s be ready when someone asks us about the hope that we have…

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… - 1 Peter 3:15

Be reminded of our reason for unshakable hope today.

And once you have been reminded, gently and respectfully pass it on to someone else who needs reminding (like I needed reminded this morning).

Let’s spread the gift of hope in a hopeless world.

He is our hope. And the Bible is our hope. Soak yourself in God’s Word when you need a dose of hope.

We can’t give someone “a pill that would give them hope,” as the little girl said in the devotion I read.

But we can point them to Jesus. He is the only sure thing.

He is HOPE. He is the GIFT.

Jesus, I praise you for your promise of unfailing love and full redemption. You are Hope and You are our Gift in this hopeless world. May we trust in your promise and find rest for our weary souls and minds. Amen.

 

Source:
(1) Beth Moore and Friends, compiled by Kin Davis. (2005).Voices of the Faithful; Inspiring Stories of Courage from Christians Serving Around the World. Thomas Nelson, Inc.: Nashville, TN.

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If you are an imperfect wife, mom, daughter, or friend, struggling to stay focused on God in the craziness and find joy in the heartache, then we have something in common. I am a recovering perfectionist and daughter of the King, slowly learning to fully trust the One who sees me just as I am, and is already pleased. I’m so glad you are here.

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