March 7, 2023

Randy Whalen
"We put our hope in the LORD. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, LORD, for our hope is in you alone."
Psalm 33:20-22

Hope is defined as cherishing a desire with the anticipation of something coming to be, to happen, or be true. We all “hope” for things in our lives. Hope sustains us, produces joy, and overcomes disappointment.
But one cannot have hope without faith. The faith that… “those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)…and the hope that He will answer, and provide… “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” —Jeremiah 29:11

To understand what hope really is, we must believe (and have faith) that “true hope” comes by trusting God, even amidst some of our life circumstances that can seem extremely difficult to deal with. One way to know whether you’re truly trusting God is whether you’re obeying his Word. Stated simply, trust produces obedience, which produces hope, which in turn results in joy and peace, and that is the power of the Holy Spirit.

I personally have experienced the true hope that only God can provide. A couple of summers ago, my kidneys had failed, and I was hospitalized for 8 days. I had received what I considered to be pretty grim news when my kidney doctor told me that I would have to be placed on dialysis. In the hospital, I received 4 sessions of dialysis. Not only was I praying and hoping for recovery this entire time, but many of my family, friends, and church family were also praying for me. I had another 10 dialysis sessions during my recovery at home, and then, miraculously, halfway through those sessions, my blood-work started to show that my kidneys were starting to respond again. The doctor said I no longer needed dialysis and that I could schedule an appointment to get my dialysis port removed! The power of hope sustained me until I got what I had been praying for!! Praise God!