Understanding the purpose of hope in a believer’s life is significant as it is one of the three things that abide: faith, hope and love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)
Hope is a unique gift to the born-again child of God. Our hope in the promise maker sustains our faith in the promises. Hope encourages us in our walk with God as we wait for the promise.
Hope is a sustaining force helping us to keep our focus, causing us to be vigilant, giving us the grace to give up the things of this world and prioritize our life.
Faith and hope are inseparable, they are also distinct. To have strong faith we must have sustaining hope!
Hebrews 11:1 tells us, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” The substance of our faith is our hope in the unseen, and the evidence (proof) of the unseen is manifest because of this hope.
As we walk through life on earth as a child of God, trusting in the Lord to meet our needs as He has promised, we must understand the seasons of life. In this world we have dual focus, the hope of heaven and the reality of His presence in our daily walk.
Everything in the Kingdom of God starts with a seed. This seed is the Word of God. (Luke 8:13) The seed carries the promises of God and must be nourished.
One Scripture that I have pondered on many times is Proverbs 13:12, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.”
The big question is, how do we handle deferred hope. When our prayer is not answered when we expect. When it seems everything is delayed? Do we let the frustration fester and make our heart sick, or do we fight the good fight of faith? (1Timothy 6:12)
Hope deferred (prolonged) is a growing season. Our Lord understands disappointment. He knows that “not getting what you want” is frustrating and discouraging.
That’s why the Lord’s desire is for us to hang on to Him. He’s waiting for the moment we come to the end of ourselves, our plans and dreams and realize our hope is found only in Him. “I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits and in his word, I put my hope” (Psalm 130:5).
Hope deferred is not denial, it is delay until the perfect time when God knows we are ready. We put our hope in God’s Word and the wisdom and promises it contains. We “ask” the Holy Spirit, our teacher and comforter, to reveal to us the mysteries of the Kingdom of God. (Matthew 13:11)
As we are waiting, we water the seed that we have sown in the Garden of our heart with praise and thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is the force that moves the mountain and prepares the way for a miracle!
I study the men and women in the Bible. They are real people in this world facing the same problems that we face in our daily life. God tells us in Romans 15:4, “…these things are written for our learning that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.” The testimonies reveal “how God works through His people to help them bring heaven to earth and overcomes the pressure of this world.
Jochebed, the mother of Moses, is one of my favorite testimonies. Living in slavery with two children and pregnant, Pharaoh gives a decree to kill all baby boys at birth by placing them in the river. As a mother, I can’t imagine being placed in this position! How did she overcome? Hebrews 11:23 tell us, “By faith, Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s (man) command.”
Meditating on this testimony gives me HOPE! By faith, because they saw. Faith sees the promises of God! Only those that see the invisible can do the impossible!
When your hope becomes faith, faith launches you into another realm that is beyond understanding. You are no longer trying to understand “how to fix the mess!”
Paul calls this, “…the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4: 7)
Jochebed followed God’s plan, she placed Moses in a basket and placed him in the river! The same river that Pharaoh commanded all baby boys would die! God had another plan, and he was looking for a man and woman that would trust Him to bring about His miracle in their life. Read Jochebed’s testimony in Exodus 1:22, and 2:1-10.
When did Jochebed’s hope become faith? When she placed her baby in the river!
When our prayers are answered and our needs met, it’s “like eating from the tree of life.” Suddenly, life is good, and all is well!
We choose how to handle deferred hope. Let’s learn from those that have walked before us. The Exodus is the story of God’s people leaving Egypt and beginning their journey to the Promised Land. A whole generation did not enter because it was too hard! It was a long journey involving many battles and betrayals. We are told to fight the good fight of faith and to stand!
Receiving the promises requires an investment of your energy and effort. We must live intentional. Our journey with God is an active adventure that requires total surrender of our life, spirit, soul, and body
The secret of navigating your hope is total surrender!
Obedience is a fruit of surrender.
Once we give up, God moves in!
Paul tells us that the pressures of this world builds our character and gives us renewed hope, not for the fulfillments of our needs, but for a deeper knowledge and relationship with God. Our hope will not disappoint! (Romans 5:3-5)