Hope. Isn’t that what a new day often represents to us?
Hope that I’ll finally get a job. Hope that a relationship will be fixed. Hope that my financial situation will turn around.
“Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.” Psalm 31:24 (NIV)
I’ve read this many times. I believe it. I even quote Scriptures like this to my friends when they need encouragement.
So, why did I lose hope recently, while dealing with a certain, unresolved situation? Why do I keep going back to the place of, “This is never going to change,” which then sends me spiraling into despair rather than resting in hope?
I spent quite some time asking God these questions. And I believe I received the answer:
I have been putting my focus, and therefore my hope, in this situation being resolved instead of putting my focus and hope in the Person who can resolve the situation.
What’s the difference?
- One way of thinking places hope in the circumstance. The other hopes in the One who is in control of the circumstance.
- One hopes things will turn out the way I want them to. The other trusts that no matter how they turn out, God will still take care of me.
- One cares way too much about what’s going to happen to me. The other believes that the more important thing is what God is doing in me.
True hope trusts in the person, the character of God. It focuses on these truths:
- God is love (1 John 4:8). Everything He does and allows operates out of this.
- He is sovereign (Proverbs 16:33). In control of every situation, every outcome.
- He is good (Psalm 100:5). It is who He is. He cannot be “bad” in His care of us.
- He works everything for our good (Romans 8:28). Even if we don’t see it this side of heaven.
These attributes cannot be separated from the God who is in our circumstance.
Everything He does and allows operates out of His fundamental attributes. It’s when we put our hope in the beautiful nature of God that we find rest, peace and acceptance, because that kind of hope can pray for the circumstance while at the same time rest in “Thy will be done.”
Are you hoping for something right now? Tell it to God. Afterward, go through the Word and make your own list of the attributes of God—and then, rest safely in the hope of who He is, rather than what is not!