Hope is often looked at as the “wishful thinking” of the Christian life. It’s one of those words (like love) that gets thrown around a good bit more than it probably should… “I hope things work out”, “I hope I’m doing the right thing”, even “I hope God knows what He’s doing- because I sure don’t!”. There’s nothing wrong with using the word “hope” but I think superfluous use tends to take away something from the Christian version of the word.
REAL hope is not just a wish on a whim that things will work out the way you want them to. It isn’t a daydream and it certainly isn’t a crutch for people who aren’t “strong enough” to tough things out on their own. It¬†is active… no passive thought system here; hope is joyfully living out and completely believing that certain¬†things WILL come.
Webster defines hope like this:
“to desire with expectation of obtainment; to expect with confidence: Trust.”
This isn’t just wishful thinking- it is an expectantly firm mindset that what was promised WILL happen; AKA: Trust. I had never really thought about hope being synonymous with trust, but in this case it COMPLETELY is! Why would we hope for [expect] anything that we had doubts about? Why would we say that our hope is in Christ alone if we doubted His existence and love for us? There can be no double-mindedness in this hope we profess… there has to be absolute trust in the One who made the promise.
Let’s look at just a few verses in Scripture that tells us a little more about this “hope” business:
“For I know the plans I have for you,‚ÄĚ declares the Lord, ‚Äúplans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in
our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God‚Äôs
love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. (Romans 5:2-5)
The hope of the righteous is gladness, but the expectation of the wicked perishes. (Proverbs 10:28)
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God. (Psalm 43:5)
Oh, there are so many other amazing verses on hope within God’s Word but I can’t list them all. (Google them- seriously)
We can hope for something we need, something we want, or something we simply THINK we want- but no hope is truly based on unshakable trust until our core hope is in Jesus Christ. After that, it’s all gravy. We won’t always get our way- aren’t you glad? However, we can trust that¬†through salvation we will one day¬†be in Heaven with our Savior and He is ALWAYS faithful to His promises. We have hope in our afflictions, our struggles, our pain, all because this life is NOT all there is. We hope in the glory to come and in the end-result of everything we go through in this life. Hope is active… a determined spirit-breathing that fuels the very center of our beings. As long as there is life- there is hope, and beyond that- is the fulfillment of that hope.
My entire life is based on my trust in God’s love and acceptance¬†that I have through the sacrifice of Jesus. ¬†I wouldn’t trade that¬†for anything in this world!