Scripture of the Week:
Colossians 1:21-23, 26-27
“At one time you were separated from God. You were his enemies in your minds, and the evil things you did were against God 22 But now God has made you his friends again through Christ’s death in the body so that he might bring you into God’s presence as people who are holy, with no wrong and with nothing of which God can judge you guilty. 23 This will happen if you continue strong and sure in your faith. You must not be moved [shift; drift] away from the hope brought to you by the Good News that you heard. That same Good News has been told to everyone in the world, and I, Paul, help in preaching it. 26 This message is the secret that was hidden from everyone since the beginning of time, but now it is made known to God’s holy people 27 God decided to let his people know this rich and glorious secret which he has for all people. This secret is that Christ lives in you. He is our only hope for glory.”
Hope Discovery of the Week:
We don’t cling to hope, but to God, our living hope.
Sometimes our hopes are crushed. Other times, they seem so far off that we can begin to wonder if our hopes will ever be fulfilled. Have you ever been there?
And still we hope. God made us to be people of hope, but sometimes we can get confused on how to hope and what our hopes should be at all.
How do we hope without making our hope an idol? How do we hope and surrender at the same time?
The object of our hope disappoints when it is found in the temporal. Only an eternal hope is capable of truly delivering hope that prevails. But while we are in these casings of flesh, we are prone to hope in something we can touch and feel . . . that we can see. Going from hope to hope, we long to be satisfied, but all hopes fall short of the one hope that will finally give us the peace we long for.
When our hope is or outcomes in this world, rather than in the Author of this world, our hope is fragile. We can hurt when we hope for healing and it does not come. It was a good hope, after all. We become disillusioned when our hope for success is met with defeat. Again. We can even doubt God’s goodness when He does not meet our hope.
Perhaps we had the wrong idea about hope, after all. Maybe our hope was only supposed to be in one place – in Christ. In the glorious Gospel – the Good News of His salvation. That one day we will be in His presence, redeemed.
And now, while we wait, we get distracted by lesser hopes that vie for our attention. We were never meant to feel fully satisfied here. This is not our home. When we hang onto hopes of this world, we are left wanting. Dependent upon fulfilled hopes for life.
But when we hang onto the one true hope, Jesus Christ, that hope will never disappoint. And this hope lives inside of us. Resident inside of man! Hope might not be visible, but it is palpable to those who have received the gift of salvation and the deposit of the Holy Spirit, speaking messages of hope to urge us on in this life.
So, then, the secret to hanging onto hope in life’s bitter storms is that we do not cling to hope, but to God, our living Hope. And this hope is nearby . . . He inhabits imperfect clay vessels and breathes hope into seemingly hopeless situations. His purposes go much deeper than meeting our earthly hopes. Our hopes matter to God, but He longs to use everything to help us see what we were made for – to know Him and to trust Him – when our hopes are met and when they are not. He is good in all of it.
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