What is hope? James Bruyn talks about a living hope, “firmly anchored in the reality of the Kingdom of God.”
James Bruyn is a bi-vocational visionary leader, writer and speaker who enjoys helping individuals integrate their faith in God with their daily life. James leads a ministry to Christians in the marketplace in Calgary, provides leadership coaching, and consults for the rail industry. James produces Marketplace Ministry for our Christian internet radio station, HopeStreamRadio. Contact us if you would like to learn more about how God changes lives.
What Is Hope?
Is hope just a feeling of expectation ? When we hope, are we just desiring something to happen? When was the last time you said something that started with the words “I hope …”? Did you truly believe that what you were hoping for would come true? How would your life or your work change if what you are hoping for today comes true? Does your hope depend on what you do, or what others do?
Hope is part of how God created us. Hope is gift that God gave Adam and Eve after the fall. Hope brings us comfort in difficult times. But you know from experience that hope is easily deceived and often disappointed, and only sometimes meets our expectations and rarely exceeds our expectations. For our lives are filled with uncertainties and incalculable probabilities.
Is there a solid anchor, something immovable and unchanging, something that is purely good that you can put your hope in today?
A Certain Hope
Emily Dickinson penned these words …
“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
And sore must be the storm –
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm –
I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
And on the strangest Sea –
Yet – never – in Extremity,
It asked a crumb – of me.
There is a certain hope! A hope that is beyond your wildest dreams. A hope that abides in a place external to this world. A place where rust and moth cannot destroy it, and where the thief cannot steal it away.
A Living Hope
There is a living hope that co-exists with everything you experience in your life including the joys, the beauty and all that is good. A hope that shines brightly amongst all the evil, sickness, despair, shame, sin and death that surrounds you.
This living hope rests solely on the goodness of God, the creator of the universe, the one who created you. A good, holy, righteous, loving, unchanging God. You can depend on this living hope with absolute confidence for God is faithful and keeps his promises. God is a God of hope. God will not deceive you or trick you.
This living hope existed before you knew God. It is a precious gift given to each one of us who have been born from above, who are new creatures in Christ, whose sins have been washed away by the cleansing blood of Christ. All you have to do, is in faith accept hope and live in constant communion with God to experience true hope.
The beauty of God’s living hope is that it does not depend on you, on anything you do, on anything you will do, on anything you have done. You don’t have to depend on anybody else of God’s living hope. And nobody can take away your eternal hope.
Will You Choose Living Hope?
You have a choice to make – will you place your hope in the constantly changing uncertainties of this world that God created or will you place your hope in the Creator and the Kingdom of God? You know from your experience what happens when you place your hope in the things of this world, you know that leaves you filled with fear and anxiety.
You won’t be disappointed when you place your hope in God. God’s love has already been demonstrated by making a pathway to hope through Jesus’ death and resurrection. Jesus is the agent to your future, completed, definitive hope. He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it (Phil 1:6). Hope guarantees that you cans stand without spot or blemish, without sin or shame in God’s Holy Presence. Hope assures you of a warm loving welcome and acceptance in God’s presence.
Jesus invites you based on his finished work on the cross to faithfully hold tightly to the living hope he offers. When you take your eyes of Christ and see the sin, depravity, and darkness around you Jesus invites you to hold without wavering to a living hope. When you are blessed beyond measure, and are enjoying life to the fullest, even as God meant life to be experienced, Jesus invites you to not let go of your living hope. And if you do let go of hope for a moment, if there are seasons when God seems far away and silent know that Hope continues unchanging.
Jesus offers you a solid, unchanging anchor to cling to. A living hope that exists outside this world of continually shifting values and post truth. An anchor that extends outside time and space and into the very throne room of heaven. An anchor that will never, ever move.
The Kingdom Of God
With a hope resting on a solid, unchanging foundation, you are free to be the person Christ created you to be. You are free from fear, and doubt and shame. God’s hope restores your dignity and enables you to hold your dreams lightly.
God is a God of hope, who longs to fill you with joy and peace, and an abundance of hope by the Spirit’s power. Because you have a living hope you can face today with joy. You don’t have to fret or worry, for with hope you see a broader perspective – a Kingdom perspective. All you have to do is set your attention and affections on the things above, upon which your hope rests.
Hope requires patience. With hope you will have to hang in there for the long run – for while you will experience glimpses of hope today, your hope only will be ultimately fulfilled in heaven.
Yes circumstances, or people will try to rob you of your joy, your patience your peace. But a living hope, patiently looks beyond these. With the hope of God you see the world differently, for you see not only this world but also the Kingdom of God.
Living Hope In The Kingdom Of God
Hope in God assures you of a permanent, eternal, secure future where one day you will see God face to face, free from all accusations. Jesus will return, bringing with him the hope that is stored up in heaven for you. Christ will raise you from the dead, and seat you in the heavenly’s along with all the host of saints. When you get to heaven hope assures you that you will receive the riches of your glorious, imperishable, unspoiled, unfading inheritance.
Hope whispers quietly that God has your circumstances under control.
With hope faithfully move forward in confidence and joy. You don’t have to fret or worry just set your attention and affections on the things above, upon which your hope rests.
Next time when you find yourself saying “I hope that …” remember that God is a God of hope.
James is passionate about connecting the rich promises of our loving Heavenly Father that we find in the Bible, with the joys and challenges of living out our faith in the workplace. James writes a weekly devotional at marketplace-ministry.ca/blog
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