Hope. What a powerful word. It carries with it such weight…such strength…such power.
Hope is what he proclaims to propel his political campaign. Hope is what sustains her as she waits for her daddy to come home from his third tour of duty. Hope is what he clings to as he watches his wife endure her long battle with cancer. Hope is what wakes him up in the morning as he goes for yet another job interview. Hope is powerful.
Yet, hope is something we also fear losing. “Don’t lose hope.” It’s a phrase we often utter to one another as a way of encouraging them, or at least we hope. This implies, of course, that while hope is powerful and can carry us through some of life’s most difficult trials, it is something that can be lost. Something we can have at one point yet lose in the next. Standing powerfully in one moment only crouched down in defeat moments later.
We’ve seen it. We’ve experienced it, haven’t we? When our daddy doesn’t come home. When our wife loses the battle. When we receive yet another rejection.
Have you ever allowed yourself to imagine, though, how those suffering some of evil’s most unthinkable injustice understand hope? Cling to hope. Are sustained by hope. Try not to lose hope. The young girl trafficked to a brothel in the red light district of India who is raped by thirty Johns a night. The refugee mother who fled her home in Uganda with her four children after the rebel force raided her town and killed her husband. The young boy orphaned and forced to fight as a child soldier in Sierra Leone. The father picking rice sixteen hours a day alongside his family as a slave laborer in Haiti.
Is hope so powerful that it can carry even these men, women and children? Is hope so strong that it can sustain even their experience of unimaginable injustice and pain? In the face of such circumstances, it’s almost impossible not to think that hope will be lost…right?
It all depends upon where our hope is placed. Upon whom our hope rests. Hope, when not placed in things earthly, but in things eternal, is not only powerful but can never be lost. It can sustain us through life’s most difficult trials. We can cling to it when all seems lost. We can stand upon it when all things around us look hopeless. How? When our hope is placed in Jesus. Jesus, the heir of heaven, the Son of God, who endured pain, rejection, persecution, injustice, and even death. Yet, on the third day, rose alive. Rose victories. Defeated life’s most ominous foe—death itself.
Is hope powerful? Can hope sustain? Could I live life without fear of losing it? Yes. When, my hope is built on nothing less than Jesus Christ, my righteousness. When, on Christ, the solid Rock, I stand.