Today’s Reading: 1 Chronicles 25-28, Psalm 78, Romans 5
Hope, defined by Oxford’s dictionary, is “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen, a feeling of trust.”
Romans 5:3 says “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance, and perseverance, character, and character, hope.”
Hope is a powerful four-letter word. Hope provides us the anticipation of something positive. Hope gives us the strength to carry on expecting our situation will get better. Hope gives us the drive and wherewithal to “stay the course” when impossible situations occur. Hope is easier to maintain when you feel loved, supported, and know there is a purpose for you, your life, and your strife.
Fear, defined by Oxford’s dictionary, is “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.”
Fear is a powerful four-letter word. Fear can cause impatience. Fear can drive people to make irrational decisions. Fear can create ideas, questions, or concerns about things that may not occur. Fear can paralyze and prevent action by anticipating what might occur.
When we turn on the news each day, there are so many reasons to be afraid and full of fear. The pandemic, the Russians and the war in Ukraine, the Republicans, the Democrats, Nancy Pelosi, Mitch McConnell, China, inflation, automated intelligence (AI), hurricanes, global warming, and the list goes on.
As Christians, we expect tribulations. As we read scripture and study God’s Word, we have a foundation to know that life on earth is going to be difficult. We make our decisions regarding gender, sexuality, morality, and the like based on the Gospel. Fear should not drive us to sadness or worry. God’s got this.
Romans 5:5 says, “Now hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”
Hope should exalt us to live with resolve and confidence that our God is at work. Hope sees us through the “chaos” of a sinful world, woke culture, and the ideology that we are a bad person for our beliefs.
May God give us peace, understanding, and hope. My favorite Bible verses are Philippians 4:6-7 which says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”