I was doing a word study on Hope. My name means hope as in faith, hope and charity. When Tom was diagnosed with cancer, hope was what I held on to. I know that God will heal him fully one day. I wear a bracelet that Tom gave me to remind me of that.
Hope is a powerful emotion. With hope you can conquer the world. The opposite of hope is despair and your world can feel like it’s ending without it. Too many people find it hard to hold on to hope. Why is that? Hope is hard to see. Merriam-Webster describes hope as desire with expectation of obtainment.
The word of God is full of scriptures that speak of hope. Too many to list here, but here are a few that speak to me:
Psalm 119:116 – “Sustain me according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed.”
Proverbs 13:12 – “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.”
Isaiah 40:31 “but 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.”
Jeremiah 29:11 – “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.”
Micah 7:7 – “But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me.”
Romans 5:3-5 – “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.”
Romans 12:12 – “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”
Hebrews 10:23 – “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.”
So in the everyday, where does hope leave us? How do we walk out our faith in faith, hope and love? For me the answer is one step at a time. Before you can jump you have to walk. Before you can leap you need to know how to jump. Before you can fly you have to leap. Before you can soar you have to fly. It doesn’t matter where you are in your walk, what matters is that you move forward. You hold on to hope and know that Lord is with you every step of the way.
The Lord wants me to soar with Him. A good friend, Jen, framed a picture she made (pictured above) and gave it to me as a Christmas present. When I opened it the Lord spoke to me that I was the girl in the picture. He’s been teaching so much since then. I had a recent experience during worship that I’ll like to share.
I pressed in and I saw the picture that Jen gave me. In an instant I saw myself as the girl on the edge and then I leaped and flew. I was flying and it was exhilarating. I started to get tired and a very large eagle came underneath me and I held onto his neck as we continued to soar. I could feel the wind on my face. We headed back to the cliff. Suddenly there was a bright light that surrounded me and I felt as if I was inside the presence of God. There was much peace and contentment.
Faith was leaping not knowing if I would fly. Hope was the eagle coming up underneath me to support me when I can’t soar alone. Love was standing in His presence and knowing that all is right in the world.
© Nadine Z. 2007
Artwork by Jennifer Troutman