Monday, December 5, 2011

The Equation of Hope

For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. — Romans 15:4, ESV

According to this verse, there are two things that are necessary for hope to be a reality in the life of a Christian.

1).  ENDURANCE. I'm not sure if you've noticed this, but being a Christian is tough. For those that say it takes no effort, I'm guessing that they've come to that conclusion for one of the following reasons:

  • They aren't really a Christian.
  • They aren't trying to live a life that is set apart for Christ, but rather have bought into a mindset that Christ came so that they could do whatever they wanted.
  • They aren't being honest.
It's tough. We have to expect that it is, while at the same time not playing the role of over-dramatic and helpless victim. And on top of that, life comes with trials and tough situations that we have to face and go through. But in all of it, God is sovereign and has a plan. Our job: keep going. Just one step in front of the other.

2).  ENCOURAGEMENT OF THE SCRIPTURES. We MUST be in the Bible on a regular basis. We have to spend time with God, sitting and meditating on his word. Realize this: every time that you open the Bible, you are spending time with God. He is speaking. Are you listening? 

Both of these things are necessary. You cannot find hope in just positive thinking. It's not a mind-over-matter type of thing. Scripture gives us the ingredients for hope.


Hang in there. Hang out with God. Experience hope.

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