Hope in A Hurting World.
by Nick Bishop
Hope at the moment, seems very fleeting and scarce. The world has become a scary and insecure place for many people, and things that people could normally rely on have either vanished or are rare, such as community and family.
This year alone, we have faced the ever-present danger of terrorism and inequality in many parts of the world, military and local conflict has resulted in war and civil unrest, not to mention the threat of climate change, highlighting the plight of those affected by the massive fires in Australia, locust infestations in Africa, and now Coronavirus (Covid-19). Human overpopulation continues to raise multiple challenges, along with the decimation of species that we share our planet with. Just a cursory look at the world would lead any sensible Christian to see that we are living in the period the Bible calls the last days. How much time is in the hourglass, only God knows, nevertheless, we are not to lose hope, because of redemption and salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. This is something every Christian cries out for.
The definition of hope for the Christian believer is wrapped up in a God who created the entire universe, and yet, clothed himself in human form in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.
In comparison to the hope Christians have, materialism only adds to the insecurity of the world, which is in a state of flux. A person may be materially secure, but this fake utopia can easily disappear in the blink of an eye. Our hope Is not in the things of this world. Indeed, Jesus Christ said we should not store up treasures on earth but in heaven (Matt 16 19 – 20). We are pilgrims that are passing through the world while looking for a better one, where there is no sin, no sickness and everlasting peace. A person who has their focus fixed only on the things of this world will soon be soundly disappointed. Our hope is in the only true God and creator who fashioned us in his image. Many have likened the futility of life without hope in God, to be like a God-shaped hole in the spirit, mind and physical body of humans.
Other faiths and philosophies may offer token hope and short term satisfaction, but compared to Christ, they are found wanting. It was Jesus himself who said, “I am the way, truth and life, no one comes to the Father, except through me” (John 14:6).
In these troubled and angry times where life is out of control, Jesus said we would have trials. However, whatever we are facing, Jesus is with us, and, will never leave us. Hope then, can seem almost invisible at times. Galatians 5:22 reminds us that the fruits of the spirit are love, peace, forbearance, and kindness. These instructions are a good basis for a foundation of hope. Consider these verses:
Romans 12:12 “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be in constant prayer”.
Psalm 39:7 “And now o Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in you”.
Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the convictions of things not seen”.
God bless you
September 29, 2020
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