Week 2: HOPE
Day 1: It’s a big deal
(The following is from the free devotional Faith, Hope, Love by Jennifer Lane)
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” — Romans 8:18-28 ESV
“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” — Romans 8:38-39 ESV
I can tell you the day the idea hope became a big deal to me. I was sitting on a couch with my family, planning my little brother’s funeral. We were picking out scriptures to be printed in the bulletin, and hope was my life vest in a sea of numbness that I was feeling in that moment. The scripture that appeared in my head like a lightning bolt was Romans 8:38-39.
My brother had died by suicide, and I felt the need to clarify to every attendee that walked into that funeral that my brother couldn’t be separated from his Savior Christ Jesus, not by his loneliness, alcohol, drugs, or that choice he made or the gun he used.
Death is a powerful thing. It tramps around with fear as its shadow.
But praise His Holy Name that hope is more powerful. It is a tidal wave that rushes in with freedom, goodness, glory, and vital assurance in its wake.
We are weak, but we wait in patience for those things promised that we cannot yet see. In our weakness, we are helped by the Spirit. The Holy Spirit offers words to Heaven when our mouths and minds cannot communicate our hearts and minds.
I have hope that my brother is with Jesus. I have hope that one day I will be with Jesus. These aren’t just ideas. These are promises found in His Word. I can have assurance of these promises.
My brother was saved and baptized at a young age. He was so eager to pray to receive Jesus, so excited to be baptized. He was adopted as a son, and that adoption was finalized, sealed on high, and cannot be undone. Nothing in creation could cause my brother to become disowned by His Father.
I will cling to hope until I am reunited with my brother, Christ, and the rest of His Bride.
This post was written by Jennifer as part of a 3-week devotional called Faith, Hope, Love. If you would like to download your free copy, VISIT THIS LINK.