Hope is hard work.
It’s not free. Hope costs us something.
It’s not easy to look at ourselves, something or someone and hope for something better. It takes determination and willpower to face a situation and bring into the picture some hope that things could be different.
But even though hope is not free, the payoff can be so very rewarding. We even have empirical evidence which proves that hope can often expedite the healing process.
Hope is a key concept in most religions. In Christianity, hope is one of the three main virtues alongside faith and love. Biblical hope means ‘a strong and confident expectation’ in something better. It is a word that is akin to ‘trust’.
But again, this kind of hope takes work.
It is never a static or passive thing. It is dynamic, on the move.
Biblical hope is in no way an escape from reality or from problems. It also doesn’t leave us lazy, just sitting around twiddling our thumbs waiting for something good to happen. Christian hope will put us in gear.
And there are some tangential benefits to hope that may not even be directly related to what we are specifically hoping for:
- Hope can bring us joy and peace in the midst of turmoil.
- Hope can give us courage, strength and boldness instead of fear.
- Hope can provide endurance and patience instead of tempting us to quit.
- Hope can offer confidence in the face of doubt
- Hope can motivate us to get up and seize each day and not just go through the motions with no expectations of change.
- Hope can keep us positive, in an oftentimes negative world.
Having hope is universally a good thing, even in those times when what we hoped for didn’t quite happen the way we wanted them to.
So today, as we continue to regularly meet people who seem to have lost much of their own hope, let’s keep on hopefully striving to be ‘The Hand of God in the Heart of the City’.
Prayer of Hope
When we stand at the beginning of each new day,
Bless us with hope to see the best of things to come…
Wisdom to make good decisions…
And most of all,
Faith that you are walking with us every step of the way.
(adapted from here)