The ‘bumper-sticker’ on the back of the truck reads… I FEEL MUCH BETTER SINCE I GAVE UP HOPE. Candidates offer it, Rush gave up on it, people are losing more of it every day… hope. The movement started nearly nearly a decade ago with a t-shirt. Here’s the sales pitch: Are you tired of looking forward to things only to have plans fall apart? Do you try to see the bright side of life, only to see even darker clouds? As you attempt to get closer to your dreams and desires, do they seem to get farther away? Whenever you anticipate something good to happen, do you get crushed in the end? Then maybe you will feel better if you just gave up hope and be able to proudly announce to the world, “I Feel Much Better, Since I Gave Up Hope”. Think about it, it may be the only way to go, without hope, there is no more let downs or disappointments. After giving up hope you will feel better, because there will no longer be any expectations for anything good to happen, so everything will be either good or business as usual.
Hope. It’s something that’s easy to lose – but vitally important to life. Questionable, it’s the 3rd most important spiritual element in the universe (1 Cor. 13:13 – 1st: love; 2nd: faith). A lack of this necessary ingredient leads to death… sadly and often… self-inflicted. Hope is so tightly bound to life that no means of men can separate the two (see 1 Peter 1:3).
In Gen. 27:46, we find a mother in a hopeless situation with her son (‘dating’ someone she didn’t approve)
In Ecclesiastes 2:17, we find a man in a hopeless situation, hating his day-in, day-out, clock-punching life.
In Jonah 4:8, we find a Christian, a preacher, in a hopeless situation – begging for God to kill him (twice).
HOPE – something that should stir up questions by those around us… 1 Peter 3:15
-These aren’t questions about our theology or clothing – they are about our smile, our song, our hope
– These aren’t questions about what we believe – they are about why we behave with life when everything around is death
HOPE – something we get from God’s Word… Romans 15:4
– From reading and hearing the stories of God’s works of power and grace (Old Testament)
– From meditating on promises and principles of God’s attributes of love and light (New Testament)
HOPE – something that motivates men to take action… 1 John 3:3
– Helps us understand God’s purpose for me – to be like Him (as He is)
– Keeps us reminded of His soon return to earth (that’s our blessed hope)!
Yes, you might lose hope in a candidate, in a party, in a spouse, in a child, in a pension, even in a church… DON’T EVER GIVE UP HOPE in CHRIST, in GOD, in the RESURRECTION, in HIS WORD, in the RAPTURE!