I always have wondered how we get hope.
If I’m feeling a little hope-less, how do I go about getting more – or how do I become more hope-full?
The word hope is actually not used that many times in the New Testament, believe it or not, only 54 times, and none of those in the Gospels. (and only 32 more times if you add in the Hebrew equivalent in the Old Testament).
The word used in the New Testament is elpis (pronounced el-peace) from the root elpo. This word translated literally means “an expectation of something good.”
Read that again.
An expectation of something good.
Not just thinking maybe, perhaps something good… but expecting it.
I think we use the word hope like what we are asking for is not a given.
So then at the root of hopelessness is the fear, or the belief, that good things cannot and will not happen to us.
and as we wonder how on earth we are supposed to manage, we start to buy into the belief that maybe good things really won’t come to us.
And I get it, and I’ve been there, but let me say this loudly and clearly today:
For those of us who have kids, it’s hard to imagine them asking for something to eat and giving them a rock. Right? And, Jesus says, we are sinful, we are human, we are NOT GOD. So if it is possible for US to give good things to our children, imagine the good things GOD is going to give you.
Not from some magic formula that we can use to get more hope when we’re feeling empty… but from God, who has promised to give us good things.
Hear that today.
That is hope.
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)