Mothers for Prodigals

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Hang on to Hope

Despite all appearances, my drive into work was inspiring. Heavy traffic and a dark, ominous sky loomed. It looked as though black clouds would open and saturate streets. But when I stopped at a red light and glanced left, I noticed an opening in the gloomy sky. Light broke though a small area, revealing blue-gray yonder. Gazing around the heavens, I saw more bright spots shining throughout space. And God said to me, “Hope!”

I considered the God-given notion of hope. Was I clinging to the promised expectations of God or focusing on the turbulent circumstances that surrounded me? Our life situations certainly appear threatening at times. And a sense of hopelessness tends to drag us down. Before we know it, we’ve forgotten the God of promise who says to us, “Hope!”

The Apostle Paul has explained the beauty of hope…..

And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. Romans 5:2-5 (NIV) 

Rejoice in our sufferings? Really, God? That’s the path to hope? Yes, He tells us, the path may begin in suffering and by holding onto hope, we persevere. Walking in perseverance brings forth character and integrity. From such moral strength we determine to hope, hope in God who has poured His love into our hearts. 

The Bible contains many amazing stories about hope, but one in particular recounts the life of Job. He was a godly man who lost everything except His wife and life in one day. What pain he must have suffered. Yet his intense sorrow led him to worship God. He proclaimed, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). 


Amidst all their troubles, Job’s wife didn’t support him. She mocked him saying, “Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die” (Job 2:9). 

But Job said, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?” 

It’s hard to believe, but God’s Word tells us that Job did not sin with his lips. (Job 2:10). Wow, what strength. Though surrounded by extreme heartache, Job trusted God. 


Eventually three of Job’s friends showed up to help him. Have you ever had friends show up to help you in a time of need? Sometimes well intended help doesn’t serve its purpose. But these four men discussed the acts of God while Job fleshed out his pain. And at one point he said to his friends, “Though He slay me, I will hope in Him" (Job 13:15). 

It seemed at some point Job wavered saying, “Where now is my hope? And who regards my hope” (Job 17:15). 

Was he losing hope? He probably experienced moments of doubt and despair. Who wouldn’t? But with expectancy he declared,“I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted” (Job 42:2). Job grabbed onto hope and held on as he journeyed through his valley of suffering. 


Years later, God blessed Job with twice the blessings he had lost. Scripture tells us he lived on for 140 more years, living to see his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He was a very old man when he died. (Job 42:16-17 NASB)

Did Job struggle with hope in God? Of course he did; he was a frail human being. But as he traveled the path of suffering, God poured out His love into Job’s receptive heart. He persevered with hope and lived in joy. And God graced him with blessings.

Have you lost hope in the middle of your situation? Do dark discouraging clouds seem to loom overhead? Don’t give up. Allow God’s Word through His faithful followers to pour strength into your heart. Hang on and hope. Live with joyful expectations for God’s gracious blessings.

Crowder with Tauren Wells - All My Hope.....

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