“You and I are unavoidably and irreducibly hope-based creatures. We are controlled not by how we live now but what we think will happen later. Christian hope has to do with the ultimate future, not the immediate.” – Tim Keller.
The poet Emily Dickinson wrote,
“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all.”
In four simple lines, Emily captured what motivates us to turn off the morning alarm and tackle the day. It is the quality that enables us to slog through when walking in the valley. We hope for good things today and a better tomorrow. But in many cases hope is wishful thinking that is often temporary. Several thousand years before Emily Dickinson, the apostle Paul described a different source of hope:“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).
Every day, we have a choice where to look for hope. The world tells us to hope in money, determination, relationships, skills, abilities, and a little luck. God tells us to look to Him. So many people are looking for hope but in all the wrong places. If we are not looking for hope in Jesus, we are simply looking in the wrong place, and true hope will not, and cannot be, found. Paul describes Jesus Christ as one “who gives us hope.” (1 Timothy 1:1) and “our blessed hope” (Titus 2:13 ESV). Jesus not only came to bring hope. He is our hope. Nothing can destroy this hope because it’s stored in heaven where no earthly power can touch it.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1:3-5
We have received new birth into a living hope that’s real daily. It’s living because Jesus is alive and offers to transform our hearts, minds, and actions daily. It is a hope that we can share with others. The world lacks hope. Human beings are clamoring to fill their empty lives with stuff. Abuse, addiction, illness, and broken relationships surround us. People need to know that Jesus came to bring hope, that He is our hope, and that our hope is alive.
Sharing the Gospel isn’t always easy. But every person you meet is searching for hope that can only be found in the love of Jesus. Opportunities are everywhere. Isn’t it worth that awkward moment to tell them about the God who loves them and who can change their lives?
- Are you tempted to place your hope in anything outside of the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ?
- What do you currently think will bring you joy and satisfaction?
- How have things in your life shown to disappoint you when you’ve placed your hope in them?
- How has Christ shown Himself to be an object of hope?