Hope can sometimes seem a bit of a wishy-washy sentiment, almost as if we’re not sure, so we have to hope. ‘I hope it will be a sunny day’, ‘I hope you like it’, or ‘I hope we win’ – a feeling of optimism, but with a large dose of uncertainty.
But the dictionary says it is also confidence and trust. In Christian terms it is all about God – and him being the one who absolutely can change things – and me. One in whom we can put our faith and trust and can rely on.
1 Peter 1:3-9 (CEV)
A Real Reason for Hope
3 Praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is so good, and by raising Jesus from death, he has given us new life and a hope that lives on. 4 God has something stored up for you in heaven, where it will never decay or be ruined or disappear.
5 You have faith in God, whose power will protect you until the last day. Then he will save you, just as he has always planned to do. 6 On that day you will be glad, even if you have to go through many hard trials for a while. 7 Your faith will be like gold that has been tested in a fire. And these trials will prove that your faith is worth much more than gold that can be destroyed. They will show that you will be given praise and honor and glory when Jesus Christ returns.
8 You have never seen Jesus, and you don’t see him now. But still you love him and have faith in him, and no words can tell how glad and happy 9 you are to be saved. That’s why you have faith.
1 Peter tells us that we can have the hope because Jesus rose from the dead. When everything appeared lost and gone, God had still won. Death could not defeat Jesus and his life. Hope lives on.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that everything will be suddenly come right, or rather how we would like it. It does mean that God is in life with us.
Neither is hope just about “pie in the sky when you die”. Hope can be a reality lived out in our lives day by day, something to cling on to. If we have faith in him, we have hope, hope in all he can and will do.
As people of hope, we have the power of God with us. Not super, zapping power, a super-hero slaying all before us; but the power of the one who’s been there done that with us. The power of Almighty God who sees and knows everything, way better than any of us; the God who walks with us day by day, through all life’s joys and traumas, right to the end; the God who saves us from ourselves and all that life throws at us; the one who makes a difference, right here, right now.
That is the hope we have, not a wishy-washy longing, but a firm confidence in the one who has died, but is risen.
Thank you Lord
that you shared all that life is
as you walked the human life.
that now you are risen,
you continue to walk with us.
Thank you for being my hope,
my power in adversity
day by day,
and my promise
of all that is to come