Sunday, December 18, 2016

Pastor's Ponderings, December 19, 2016

God’s Hope For Our Lives

I recently reread the mythological story of Pandora’s Box.  In this story, Pandora was given a beautiful box by the gods, but was warned never to open it. Being curious, she eventually opened it. However, Zeus, the chief god, had packed the box full of all the terrible evils he could think of such as disease, misery, poverty and death, which stung Pandora over and over again until she slammed the lid shut.

But, there was one more voice calling to be let out, Hope. It fluttered from the box like a beautiful dragonfly, touching the wounds created by the evil creatures, and healed them. Even though Pandora had released pain and suffering upon the world, she had also allowed Hope to follow them.

There are a lot of problems in this world such as national enemies like China issuing ultimatums, orphans crying behind cruel enemy lines in Aleppo, the ravages of curable diseases in the third world and many other threats. We must remind ourselves that our hope is in Him (Psalm 43:5). Knowing that we have that hope, we can be strong (Psalm 31:24). This wasn’t something that happened recently, God gave us this hope even when we were babies (Psalm 22:9).  When problems overwhelm us, we know that if our hope is in Him and in His love, He has His eyes upon us and He hears us (Psalm 33:18, Psalm 38:15).  In spite of our wealth, God wants us to put our hope in Him, not our uncertain riches (1 Timothy 6:17).

We know there are major problems in our lives, but we must have faith to face these challenges. The Bible says that faith is the substance of things that we have hoped for (Hebrews 11:1).  Small hope, small faith; great hope, great faith. We will never stay defeated when we keep our eyes on Him, our hearts toward Him, and our hope in Him.

Psalm 43:5
New International Version (NIV)
Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

Psalm 31:24
New International Version (NIV)
24 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.

Psalm 22:9
New International Version (NIV)
9 Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you, even at my mother’s breast.

Psalm 33:18
New International Version (NIV)
18 But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,

Psalm 38:15
King James Version (KJV)
15 For in thee, O Lord, do I hope: thou wilt hear, O Lord my God.

1 Timothy 6:17
New International Version (NIV)
17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.

Hebrews 11:1
New International Version (NIV)
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

No comments: