It’s been a rough week. For many reasons. Work has been strenuous. I’ve been busy preparing for company to arrive. And sleep has been elusive this week.
But I am not without hope. Tonight I spoke to the Ladies Ministry about hope. I have known hopelessness. I have known it both before and after becoming a believer. Hopelessness is a barren place. It is an empty place, hollow, echoey, lonely. I have known hopelessness sitting in a field at age 15. And I have known hopelessness as I watched my world crumble around me as my husband was taken off to prison.
But this afternoon in preparing to speak and studying hard, doing real scripture work, I was reminded that I am not without hope. Job, a man who lost everything dear to him, was eventually able to come to a place where he spoke these words (Job 13:15) “Though He SlAY me, I will hope in Him.” That’s the kind of hope I want to have. It’s not an easy hope to come to, because it requires faith. And trust. Oh, but to be able to say that alongside Job sincerely–Though he slay me, I will hope in Him–How does one get to that deep fathom of hope?
I love the passage in Hebrews 10:19-25:
Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, 20 by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
Don’t be tempted just to glance through that passage! There is too much there to just give it a cursory reading. Really look at what it is saying. It’s the Gospel–maybe not in the way we are used to hearing the gospel, but it is there all the same. And verse 23: Let us HOLD FAST the confession of our hope WITHOUT WAVERING, FOR HE WHO PROMISED IS FAITHFUL. Let us stand fast (1 Thessalonians 3:8-10) Let us hold fast–let us not let go. Not. Let. Go. of the confession of our Hope. What is that hope? It’s the gospel, it’s the good news that Christ came to earth to live amongst men, being fully man and fully God. He gave His life for our sin, for my sin-dying on the cross to take the punishment that was meant for me and for you. And He did not stay there–He was resurrected and some day we will be home with him.
We are to hold fast without wavering—O God, how I waver. I waver nearly every day. It’s hard to continually stand fast, continually to hold fast without wavering. But He who has promised is faithful. He is faithful. Preach it to yourself. I need to preach it to myself. He is faithful, the one who has promised.
Life is not easy. It’s hard work. It’s discouraging. It’s heartbreaking. But we are not without hope, those of us who are followers of Christ. One day we shall see Him like He is. One day we will all be home.