May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.Romans 15:13
There are many hopeful things happening right now in our society. COVID numbers are dropping rapidly. Vaccinations are up and are changing the landscape of this pandemic. Schools are re-opening (even if only in a hybrid model). These are all good things and are reasons to be hopeful.
Yet, we need to remember that our ultimate hope is in the Lord. Our hope is not grounded in politics. Our hope is not grounded in a vaccine. Our hope is not dependent on restrictions being lifted or not lifted. We do not live with a conditional hope that changes on the whims of our society. We, as followers of Christ, have an unconditional hope. We have an unyielding hope that is rooted and grounded in the person and nature of Jesus Christ.
As we trust in the God of hope, He is able to fill us with all joy and peace regardless of our circumstances. When this happens, we overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. We need the power of the Spirit to access this kind of unconditional hope. It all comes down to trusting the God of hope. Our trust is directly proportional to our hope. No matter what circumstances surround us, if we can trust the Lord, then–through the Holy Spirit–we can overflow with hope. The psalmist said it well in Psalm 33:
No king is saved by the size of his army;Psalm 33:16-22
no warrior escapes by his great strength.
A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
despite all its great strength it cannot save.
But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
to deliver them from death
and keep them alive in famine.
We wait in hope for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love be with us, Lord,
even as we put our hope in you.
Notice again the link between trusting the Lord and having hope. People wrongly assume that their lack of hope has to do with their bleak outlook or poor circumstances. Yet, it has more to do with their ability to trust the Lord when they don’t understand. Trust is the bedrock of hope, and hope is the soil where faith grows. “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (Hebrews 11:1).
Yes, our circumstances are looking more hopeful, and this is great news! But if you want lasting, enduring, unconditional hope, you will only find it by trusting your life to Jesus Christ. Trusting Him is the foundation of real hope!