Hope is one of the common denominators of life. A precious commodity sought after by men of all centuries, none have lived outside of its domain. Be it the rich or the poor…the free or the oppressed…the courageous or the cowardly, all seek it throughout the span of their lives. I would assume, that you and I can find ourselves somewhere amidst the spectrums above…and that we can agree that we have not reached a state where we are beyond the necessity of hope in our lives.
Quite ironically, I have discovered that it is not the victories, but rather the tragedies of life that command hope’s existence. If you really think about it, there is really no need for hope where all things are well. Consider the following…
Will there be a need for hope in heaven?
I would ask, hope for what? The notion of hope carries an undertone that there is something wrong in our current state. And it is this state of imperfection that our hope stands to overcome. Yet, if there is nothing wrong, tell me…what are we then hoping for?
Many of us have “hope” while we are encountering victories in life…when our lives on this earth are running smoothly and we have a sure grasp of our destinies. Yet, hope was never designed for the good days. Did you know hope is unemployed where things are perfect? Being the hero designed to rescue us in the days of trouble, hope is without work in the absence of trouble. This makes me wonder if the “hope” we boast in times of well-being, is really hope at all. After all, we are only left wondering, to where, this “hope” suddenly flees, in the moments we are faced with trials.
But the ironic truth is that hope is never closer to us than when we are faced with trials. I will tell you this – hope’s existence depends on the existence of trials just as much as it depends on the existence of the agent that provides it. While hope indeed requires a source that provides it, the provision of hope itself is a response provoked by the presence of trials and troubles in the first place. I don’t know about you but that excites me! And here is why…it implies that the trials that I face do not suck out my hope, but in fact, create the atmosphere in which it thrives!
Be comforted because your trials are fertile ground for hope! If you plant the right seeds into them, hope will surely spring forth out of them….and t h r i v e ! The key element here is to know what seeds we are to plant into our trials for hope to grow out of them.
Think of it like this: if we wanted to grow an apple tree, what kind of seeds do we plant into the ground? We would plant apple seeds. Likewise, if we want hope to grow out of our trials, we would have to plant hope seeds…wouldn’t we?
You are probably wondering what these hope seeds are. They are the building blocks of hope…the foundations on which hope is established. They are the sum of God’s promises to love and take care of us now and for all of eternity.
1 Peter 1:4 teaches us that God, by His mercy, has “begotten us again into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” The foundation of hope is salvation – the ultimate expression of God’s love for humanity. For those of us who have been born again into the family of God, even death – which is the chief of all trials, only incites in us, a living hope of the glorious eternity that awaits us because of the love God has for us! Now, if we have such a hope in the face of the greatest trial that sneers at us, how much more hope should we boast in the face of much inferior and relatively petty trials? The formula does not change! We are to confront them with love-promises …those with which God has bound Himself to us. We are to plant these seeds of hope into our trials and watch hope thrive!
Hope is not found in the best of places, but in the worst of places.
1 John 4:16 “We have known and believed the love that God has for us”