Hope For The Hopeless
“All my hope is in Jesus,
Thank God that yesterday’s gone.
All my sins are forgiven,
I’ve been washed by the blood.”
“All My Hope”
His voice rasps the lyrics over an old-school, gospel-laden chorus that wrenches at my soul, especially times such as these. In times that seem hopeless, when youthful faces and courageous teachers and coaches lay dead on the floors of a school; when hate and division runs rampant across our nation; when friends, families and community members can no longer speak civilly to one another — the master of discord is clearly at work, and for a while, I almost lost sight of the truth.
But my friend Crowder, led by the Holy Spirit, gave me an old-timey reminder: All of my hope is in Jesus.
Not man. Not the world. Not an institution. Not my feelings. Not circumstances.
My hope is anchored squarely in Jesus, the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords. The Alpha and the Omega.
I’ll let you in on a little secret: so is yours.
There is one place Satan wants you to be: in the pit of hopelessness. If we feel defeated and broken down, he has won. The king of this world, the father of lies, is hell-bent on taking our joy, stealing our hope and leading us down the wide road of death.
My friends, no matter what that looks like, we have to maintain our faith. We have to remember that Christ came to give us life, and life abundantly. We have to remember that we cannot fear what is temporary, but rather trust in the eternal.
Think of all the hopeless situations God has led his people out of over the centuries. Thankfully, we have the Good Book to remind us in these dark moments.
God took a rag-tag group of men and built a powerhouse for spreading the Gospel. He took a man named Abram and made him into Abraham, the father of nations. He took a young unwed woman named Mary and made her into the mother of the Savior. The Lord took a void of nothingness and created the world and all that is in it.
If we ponder just a moment on Abraham, as Paul explains in Romans, he “believed against hope” that he would be the father of nations. Paul tells us that Abraham didn’t falter when faced with the idea that his body was old and his wife was old. He did not waiver when human logic would tell him that it was impossible for him to father a child, let alone a nation.
Paul continues in Romans 4:20-25 to explain how we, too, can and should hope against hope.
“No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. That is why his faith was ‘counted to him as righteousness.’ But the words ‘it was counted to him’ were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.”
Abraham’s example gives us a story to follow and believe that despite what might seem hopeless, we should be hopeful and continue in our faith in God.
Am I saying that we shouldn’t try to make things better here just because we have hope? Not at all. We shouldn’t pull away from the world, but rather go out into it and provide love, hope and advocacy for our fellow man. Jesus didn’t lock himself up in a church and stay there. He walked out amongst the people, calling tax collectors and children and sinners to come to him for rest.
He didn’t hide away from the world for fear that he would be “tainted” or “dirty.”
Jesus loved his people and went out to them, having pity on those who were broken and loved them right where they were. Just as he rescued the woman who was an adulterer and called Zacchaeus out of the tree, we should do the same.
Jesus commanded us to “Go,” and so we shall. But let us do so with the hope of Christ in our hearts and the peace and love of God on our lips.