14 September 2013

3 things about hope

When Brad deployed the first time, there was a heated discussion in my Sunday School class about hope. One man was convinced that "hope" was weakness. Of course, in my emotionally-exhausted-state I could barely offer a counter argument without tears. I remember trying to explain that Hope was the very thing carrying me through each day. This encounter caused me to reflect and study up on the word hope.

When the second Compassion International Blog Month blogging assignment came to my inbox, I was pretty sure hope would be the word I picked. After a few days of marinating in my head and heart, it was confirmed.

1. Hope floats but its also an anchor.  I know, its probably cheesy to allude to a Sandra Bullock movie in a post about Hope.  I can't help it, that movie title is a good one.  So often, hope is lighthearted and surrounded by happy thoughts.  Think of the hopeful atmosphere at a graduation ceremony or a wedding ceremony or even a redeployment ceremony.  Hope floats indeed.  But its also an anchor.  Its the thing that holds us steady when nothing in the world seems steady at all.  It tethers us to Truth when everything around is tumbling apart.

We have this hope as an anchor for our lives, safe and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain. Jesus has entered there on our behalf as a forerunner, because He has become a high priest forever in the order of Melchizedek. - Hebrews 6:19-20 (HCSB)

2. Hope believes but it also expects.  I think we often interchange the word "hope" with the word "wish".  As Christians, though, Hope is so much more than wishing.  Perhaps that misunderstanding in my Sunday School class years ago had to do with confusing hoping for wishing.  They aren't the same.  Hope is grounded in belief, built upon expectation.  There is a precedence for the Hope we hold on to.

For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it. - Romans 8:24-25 (NASB)

3. Hope can be given but it cannot be taken.  This is perhaps the most exciting part about this little post today.  We can give Hope.  And this Hope we can give is the kind that changes lives forever and can never be taken away.  It is the richest of gifts, and we, as believers, are so privileged to be able to share it.  Compassion International is such an amazing organization to partner with because they not only meet basic needs, they introduce people to Jesus.  They don't just provide clean water, they also point to the Living Water.  They don't just serve healthy meals, they furnish spiritual nutrition through the Bread of Life.  They don't simply administer basic medical care but also grant access to the Great Physician.  They don't just rescue children from poverty, they do it Jesus' name.

There is a song by Bebo Norman called, "I'm Alright" the lyrics begin with this way ::

I have a little hope here in my pocket
Wanna share of it with you
Just be careful that you don't drop it
Don't worry if you do

We've got Hope in our pockets!  We can share our hope with those that need it desperately.  Its only $38 a month.  I know, you immediately think, "We don't have an extra $38 a month."  I get that.  But I would encourage you to think about what "extras" you currently spend $38 on a month (cell phone? internet? soda? donuts?).  Maybe you can find a way to move a couple items around in your budget to make room for giving some hope away.  You will never regret it.

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. - Romans 12:11-13 (NIV)

If you aren't sure where to start, one fun way to find a child to sponsor is by narrowing it down by a meaningful date, like your birthday!  Go ahead and take a peek!


1 comment:

  1. Oh sweet friend, I remember those days of Brad's deployment. I remember you holding onto God tightly with both hands because He was the only one that truly knew what you were going through. Yes, many of us have had a deployed spouse but each of our stories are different. Only God knows what each of us go through while our spouses are absent.
    I think you are so right in saying we confuse hope with wishing. Hope can be given, but not taken away!
    Awesome writing once again.