“Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise.” Hebrews 10:23
How in the world can we hold on to hope — without wavering — in a world like the one we live in today?
It’s a question I’ve found myself asking (and one a lot of my friends have been asking) lately. Every day the hits just keep coming. The storm clouds keep gathering. The headlines keep screaming. So many people around the world — so many people in our own communities and in our own families — are struggling. Suffering.
But the answer is right there with the instruction, right there with the encouragement or exhortation — right there in the verse. What is “the hope we affirm”? Where does our hope come from?
Our hope is not in our government. Not even if – by some miracle – all of our elected leaders were suddenly men and women of principle, wisdom, character, and integrity. Or at least our preferred party.
And unlike the singer of a popular song, we’re not waiting on the world to change…
Our hope is not in society. In our culture. Or in the transformation of that culture through the Church rediscovering / better explaining our “relevance.”
Our hope is not in the innate goodness of humankind. That the nice person sitting next to us buying us dinner wouldn’t just as easily sell us to the highest bidder. (In any number of ways… literally or metaphorically speaking.)
History has shown us what human beings were once capable of – and are still capable of. Even in the places we go to escape, we find ourselves confronted with news of the atrocities human beings are actively committing against one another around the globe today.
Our hope is not in our own efforts. Our own abilities. We’ve seen how helpless, how useless we can be. And how we contribute to one problem, even as we try to solve another.
Our hope is not (ultimately) in our own circumstances changing or our health improving or specific situations in our families or workplaces or communities being resolved. We may hope for some of those things. But the relief is temporary. Each new day brings challenges, new “trials and temptations” of its own.
Our hope is God and God alone. He can be trusted. He is faithful. And He keeps His promises.
What has He promised?
That He would never leave us or forsake us…
That He was going to prepare a home for us (Heaven) where we could be with Him and the rest of the family of God forever and ever….
He promised that He would reveal Himself to us, that we would know Him and His Father intimately, that His Holy Spirit would live in us and through us…
He promised that He would lead us and guide us…
He promised that we would have trouble…
He promised that we would be hated by the world, just like He was. That we would be mocked and ridiculed and rejected. And that we would face persecution…
He promised us His peace, a perfect peace, that nothing and no one could take away from us…
He promised that if we remained in Him, we would produce much “fruit.” We would grow strong and vibrant in our faith, in our relationship with Him, and that He would do great things for His kingdom and glory, as His power was at work in us and through us…
He promised us that we would overcome… that we would be more than conquerors! That we would be victorious! And that one day He would return for us. He will come back the same way He left…
It’s in THIS that our hope doesn’t waver. It’s in THIS that we stand strong. It’s in the light of THIS Truth, this reality that we can face whatever comes our way today and tomorrow…
Because GOD is faithful.
Because God IS faithful.
Because God is FAITHFUL.
He can be trusted. He keeps His promises.
Virtual VBS Assignment:
We’re in Week Three of our free online summer Bible study, Virtual VBS for GrownUp Girls: Holding on to Hope… When Life Is Hard. If you’re participating, here are your instructions for this week:
- the hope of Heaven
- the promise of revelation (that Jesus will reveal Himself to you, reveal the Father; that the Holy Spirit will give you wisdom and guide you and lead you into all Truth)
- the significance of obedience
- the promise of peace in times of trouble or persecution
- the necessity of “abiding in the Vine” — staying connected, or as my friend Jennifer Kennedy Dean puts it, “synced” with Christ
Choose one of these themes (or another that stands out to you) and “camp out” in these verses. Ask the 5 Ws and an H: Who, What, When, Where, Why and How. And the question, “What does this mean for me — right now, in my life today?” You could write out your answers in a journal, look up other related verses, or reflect on ways to begin applying what God is showing you, and/or write a prayer of response.
If you have any comments or questions or prayer requests, please feel free to share them below!