What do we hope for? Do we expect our hopes to become reality? Or is our hope in desperation, without any conviction that it will ever happen?
Without Jesus Christ there is no hope at all: ‘Remember that at that time you were separate from Christ.. and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world’ (Ephesians 2:12).
The dictionary definition of hope is ‘A strong feeling or desire that something good will happen.’ We hope that a sick friend will get well, or that everything will turn out right for the future. But the bible tells us to put our hope in God.
‘Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God’ (Psalm 42:5).
If our hope is in God then a transition takes place. It becomes faith. Outside of God there is no hope ((Ephesians 2:12), but faith in God is stronger than hope without God, which has no foundation. So our hope becomes centred on God who works all things together for the good of those who love him. (Romans 8:28).
‘Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires, but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires’ (Romans 8:5). What we want, what we desperately seek is no longer the issue. The issue is “what does God want?”
As we begin to look at things from God’s perspective our prayer becomes, ‘your will be done, on earth, as it is in heaven’(Matthew 6:10). Then we can lay down our fears and anxieties in the assurance that God’s way is best. If we allow Him free rein to carry out His will in our lives, and not stand in His way, we will be carried by the wind of the Spirit into that true and perfect way which is of God.
So, our hope that a situation changes, or that someone who is sick will get well, no longer depends on our wishful thinking. It stands purely upon God. And if we are willing to hand it all over to Him, and pray with Him instead of against Him, the situation will change on His terms.
Trust Him. Allow Him room to move. Hand it over to His way, and by doing so we relinquish all our worries and fears, and our hopes become, not what we in our flawed judgements desire, but faith in the certainty of His infinite wisdom. ‘For we live by faith, not by sight’ (2 Corinthians 5:7).
‘Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint’ (Isaiah 40:31).
Prayer: Lord, my hopes and dreams run ahead of You. I look to the future and see only what I want to see. Help me to focus on You, and to see You ahead of every situation, so that You become involved in all my aspirations and become the answer to my every need. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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