It’s easy to lose our grasp on hope with all the turmoil going on these days. To make it even worse, prophets of doom are currently showing up in hordes, saying, “I dreamed,” or, “I saw,” — “and it is going to be really BAD.” Each new revelation seems to be more sensationally awful than the last! Between what we can all see with our own eyes and what these prophets — accurate or not — are saying, many of the saints are becoming increasingly fearful and despairing. Some intercede from a place of panic; some run to stockpile food, guns, and ammo; some have just given up entirely. None of these responses are what God intends for His Church.
No matter whether fearful things are ahead or not (and yes, we most likely will go through more difficult days for a while), the Lord wants to fill His people with hope. Did you know that one of the names God gives Himself in the Bible is “The God of Hope”?
Take a look at Romans 15:13: “Now, may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Because hope is part of God’s nature, He wants to impart it to us. The Holy Spirit dwells inside of us, so as we look to Him, we can be filled to overflowing with His hope-nature, which also leads to inner joy and peace.
But, what can we be hopeful about? Both our short- and long-term future. Our greatest hope lies in our eternal destiny to be with Jesus always. He wants us to take comfort in His promise that He will return for us. Savor His promises once again. We must not forget, minimize, or let go of them:
In My Father’s house are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. — John 14:2, 3
For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. — 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17
“That where I am, you may be also.” “And so shall we ever be with the Lord.” These are some of my favorite words. They are our “blessed hope” (Titus 2:13). 1 Thessalonians 4:18 concludes, “So comfort one another with these words.”
The Rapture — Jesus’ return to catch us away, so that we can be always by His side — has come under great attack, even from within the Church. Don’t let scoffers steal your hope through their ignorance and unbelief. Your destiny is not bound to this earth alone, so don’t let them anchor your attention too firmly on this world. Our greatest hope still lies in our eternal future.
Now, that said, God also wants us to have hope for our remaining time here on earth. We shouldn’t give up and think nothing good can happen until we are lifted out of here. Psalm 27: 13, 14 says, “I would have fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart….”
God knows that we need to see His goodness poured out upon us in this life. Do you need healing? Deliverance from some difficulty? Restoration of a relationship? Are you praying for loved ones to be saved? Do you desire to see your entire nation brought to God? Pray confidently for the answers you long for. “Ask, and you shall receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24).
This is not the time to give up on earth and do nothing while we wait for the Lord. Did He not say, “Occupy until I come” (Luke 19:13)? While we are here, the Lord asks that we pray, speak, and act as His ambassadors, expecting to make a difference for the better.
Let’s end with one more word on hope, from Psalm 42:5: “Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him for the help [in Hebrew, Yeshuah] of His countenance.”
Keep secure hold of your hope. The all-powerful God is the source of it, and He will not disappoint you.
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