Years ago, a friend of mine went through a phase where he was desperate to find ‘the one’, get married and settle down. Our circle of friends (students all) consisted of confirmed bachelors and he came in for a lot of teasing as he pursued one lady after the other. It was quite funny to see the hope on his face after every first date. We would wait up for him and teasingly finish his sentences as he described this perfect person that he had just discovered.
You see, we could finish his sentences because it was the same every time. It was phrases like ‘we have the same dreams…’ or ‘she is just perfect…’ or ‘we talked for hours…’ and so forth. Inevitably and mostly quickly his hopes were dashed as she turned out not to be ‘the one’.
After a while, he gave up and did a wee bit of studying. Years later, the lady who is now his wife found him, grabbed him by the scruff of the neck and led him into marital bliss that has lasted to this day, with no sign of waning.
I’ll never forget how his eyes lit up with hope before every first date. He was energetic and full of ideas. Nothing was too much or too difficult. It was a good time to ask him to help you with something. 😊
Hope is a powerful thing. Andy Dufresne, played by Tim Robbins in the 1994 Stephen King movie Shawshank Redemption, says it like this.
“…, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”
It may be the best of things, but the tragic truth is that hope can be lost. It is sad to watch as the hope in someone’s heart fades away. I remember my friend’s despair as another potential relationship ended. And I remember when he lost hope.
Do you know what it feels like to lose hope?
Sometimes it happens so gradually that you don’t even realise it. Sometimes there is a moment of disappointment or failure and it is lost in a single moment.
Hope is what moves you forward and what keeps you going. Hope is the best reason to get up in the morning. And hope helps you to sleep with a smile, dreaming about a better tomorrow. Without hope, momentum is lost and tomorrow will, at best, be the same as yesterday.
There is a beauty to people with hope in their hearts that nothing else can cause. You should be living with hope! If you are struggling without it, consider this.
Often when hope is born in our hearts, it is a fragile, naïve thing that is easily crushed as we discover challenges or the length of the journey. However, hope reborn knows the challenges but thrives anyway. The key is to place our hope in the right thing. The psalmist phrases it like this in maybe the most famous acrostic poem ever (Psm 119:81 NLT).
“I am worn out waiting for your rescue, but I have put my hope in your word.”
It does not matter how long it takes, if God said it, it will happen. Don’t be naïve. Place your hope in the right thing. Jesus encourages us with these words (Mat 24:35 NLT)
“Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will never disappear.”
I pray that as you read here, you will be reminded of a hope lost. And that your heavenly Father will renew that which was from him so that you will hope AGAIN, strongly and correctly.
Let me leave you with the words of David in Psalm 131:3 as The Message Bible words it.
"Wait, Israel, for GOD. Wait with hope. Hope now; hope always!"
In my mind, I’m speaking to you right now, replacing the name ‘Israel’ with your name, praying that you HOPE AGAIN!
Previously posted here