A group I attend studied two books that dealt with hope over many months in 2015. One by Max Lucado called, You’ll Get Through This: Hope and Help for Your Turbulent Times, published and copyrighted by Thomas Nelson in 2013. A really great book.
The second one by a Western New York author, Sandra Fox, entitled Lord Renew My Hope, copyright 2007, published by xulon press. I started it before I moved one time and when I searched my book shelf, there it was – incomplete. I decided to finish it and realized the other ladies would be blessed. When I asked them if they were interested, they said, “Yes!”
A few needed encouragement at the time. That’s the blessing of friends, and brothers and sisters in Christ. Our real families are not always near by to listen or to give words of wisdom when we’re in a conundrum.
So we ordered the second book on hope and read of some struggles and answers to prayer. We discussed the admonition to hold on, and to paraphrase one of the author’s ideas: Find promises in the Word!
“Just try to do the next right thing,” a great guy, David McLaughlin of Rochester, NY used to say.
He went to be with Jesus before us. We enjoyed him when he came to church and to other activities. He usually brought bananas to share and a positive attitude. He also made us laugh and beat us at a business game we played – he told us he did the same kind of thing in real life in his past. Smart! 🙂
Like David discovered when his cancer showed up, we find hope is required in this life.
I love the book of Hebrews. It was Paul’s letter to the converts from Israel. Hebrews 11:1, (KJV) says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
If you have faith, whatever you’re hoping for will seem so real you can rest in the fact that it’s on its way.
If we have hope, we’ll aim for a goal, we’ll pray, we’ll take action. However, in Proverbs 13:12 (KJV), we learn that “Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.”
If people face constant discouragement, they may feel like life will never change and they may want to give up. That is a lie from the pit of hell, really. In our group, one lady was feeling low and another person said, “I understand. I felt that way last year. I came through and I learned a few things along the way. Let me tell you about it. By the way, I pray for you every day.”
The lady who felt low is noticeably improved! We need each other, we need God, we need hope. We need the Bible. Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” (KJV)
Our mindset can change the course of our lives. Philippians 3:20 (CEV) says: “But we are citizens of heaven and are eagerly waiting for our Savior to come from there. Our Lord Jesus Christ
Php 3:21 has power over everything, and he will make these poor bodies of ours like his own glorious body.”
If you need hope, I pray you’ll find someone to help you in a healthy way. We all need encouragement once in a while on this planet. Every one of us.
In the book of James, one of the verses in chapter one says we don’t have because we don’t ask God. Then there are conditions He outlines as reasons for His negative response to our prayers as well.
The Bible is filled with wisdom. If you haven’t read it, that may be your first step towards hope. When I’m lacking hope, I need to get my Bible out. Maybe I’ve been neglecting reading the Word, starving my spirit and feeding my flesh. That makes me grumpy, I know from experience.
I pray you have the hope that God gives abundantly. Enjoy the rest of 2015.