August 2022 Monthly Message

When discouraging and depressing news threatens to flood the nation, the church, and the soul, we need God's help to lift up our heads, hearts, and hands.  But once fear is cast out, we then have to build positive Christian hope in its place. Here is a list of ten reasons to hope even when things seem hopeless.

1. Hope moves us forward: Christian hope is a realistic expectation of and joyful longing for future good and glory based upon the reliable word of God. The more we long for the future, the less we will yearn for the past. Hope deletes regrets and underlines expectation.

2. Hope energizes the present: It is worth living today because the eternal tomorrow is so much brighter. What's doomsday for most, is coronation day for us. What most people dread, we desire.

3. Hope lightens our darkness: Hope does not deny nor remove the reality of dark and painful providences. However, it does shine a bright light. Don't forget to shine your light as brightly as possible.

4. Hope increases faith: Faith fuels hope but hope also fuels faith. Hebrews 11 makes very clear, hope and faith are very closely tied together, the one enlivening the other. Without faith we cannot soar in hope, but without hope faith will be weak.

5. Hope is infectious: Just as we can drag others down by our negativity and moping, so we can inspire and motivate through our inspiring hope. It not only encourages other Christians, but it also impacts depressed unbelievers who cannot but ask a reason for the hope they see in us (1 Pet. 3:15).

6. Hope is healing: There are many depressed people in this world. By definition, depression is a sense of hopelessness. Things cannot and will not get better. That's why we need to live in hope to show others the benefit it will have in their lives.

7. Hope is practical: Hope does not mean we just sit and wait for Utopia to appear. Not at all! Hope motivates action. When we hope for better days for the church, we serve the church. When we hope for the conversion of our children, we are motivated to share the Gospel with them. When we hope for God's blessing on His Word, we listen to it much more avidly. Hope produces action.

8. Hope purifies: Whatever persecution we experience in this world, the day is coming when we will not be just called sons of God, we will be like the Son of God. This is what inspires and motivates the apostle to persevere to the end and to persevere in holiness. "And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure" (1 John 3:1-3).

9. Hope stabilizes in the storm: There are sixty-six drawings of anchors in the catacombs, the caves and tunnels that persecuted Christians hid in during the Roman persecutions. Hope was their anchor during those dark and stormy days (Heb. 6:19; 10:34). Like the anchor, hope grabs what is out of sight

10. Hope defends: Paul also depicts hope as a defensive helmet (Eph. 6:17; 1 Thess. 5:8) that must not be taken off and laid aside until the battle is over. The helmet also points us to the area of greatest vulnerability and danger - our mind or thoughts. That's where Satan usually works to present reasons to doubt and despair. And that's why we need our minds daily renewed by the power of hope.