Find the Hope You Need
Do you need hope? Do you wonder how things will ever change for you? God knows what you are going through and he wants to help. No matter what hurt you may be experiencing, or where you have been, or what you have done, He has hope for you.
For generations, humanity had waited for the birth of their Savior and Messiah. He would not come as a decorated warrior or an earthly political leader, but He would come as the one who would hear the cries of the sick, mend the hearts of the broken, and liberate those in spiritual bondage. In the middle of darkness, God came near to us through the birth of Jesus Christ, and He delivered the light of hope through the death, burial and resurrection of His Son.
Throughout all of history, people have been searching for hope and doubting that hope would ever find them. Maybe you have experienced similar doubts, wondering if God cares for you or would ever come near to you. If you’ll journey back in time with me, I think you will encounter the hope for which your heart longs.
The story of humanity began with a glorious creation. The voice of God brought forth the heavens and the earth, with man and woman at the heart of this spectacular display. The majority of people today instinctively affirm this creation, believing that a cosmic event occurred and humanity came into existence.
The Bible shares that in those moments, God formed man and woman and placed His thumbprint on them, known as the Imago Dei (image of God). God designed us in His image so that we may bask in and benefit from His love. He also designed us to be reflections of His glorious light. In Genesis 1:3 the Bible tells us, “God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light.” From that point forward, God began shining His glorious love and light in and through all creation.
The Bible also says in Genesis 1:31, “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” However, something significant happened. Something had gone terribly wrong. From light and love, humanity fell into darkness and depravity. The Bible calls this the fall, and we have all experienced it. Maybe someone has lied to us, and it hurt. Maybe we have lied to someone, and it hurt them. We have all seen and experienced hurt and brokenness in the world, and it can be painful. Ultimately, these things are sin wounds. We have all experienced them and we have all created them.
These difficult things are all a result of the fall. God created everything in beauty and splendor, but the Bible tells us in the book of Genesis that humanity rebelled against God. God had a perfect plan and purpose for His creation, but, in a single moment, humanity decided that they wanted to do things their own way. Since that moment of rebellion, humanity has had an aching and longing that they cannot seem to overcome. In reality, that emptiness we keep trying to fill is evidence that we are all missing our Heavenly Father. We are all longing to spend time with our Creator. Our Creator made us and He desires a relationship with us. However, our sin and brokenness separate us from our Heavenly Father.
This is what makes the historical life of Jesus so powerful. The story of Jesus is the story of HOPE becoming flesh. History records him as a real person, and eye witnesses give account to his death, burial and resurrection. God would not leave us in brokenness, He would come and save us – that’s great news!
God had one Son. But rather than being selfish and prideful like we might think, God wanted to redeem the humanity he created. He actually cared about the world so much that he released what he so cherished, he gave his one and only Son for you and for me. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
God doesn’t want something from us, he wants something for us. He wants us to have a hope-filled, purposeful life. He is a good, loving and giving God. He gave His Son so that anyone and everyone can have an opportunity to receive eternal life. Romans 10:13 says, “Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” The Bible says if you do that and believe God is who He says He is and He’ll do what he says He’ll do, you will not perish but you will have eternal life.
The promise of the hope-filled life is as simple as accepting the promises of God. 2 Peter 1:4 says “By these he has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature.” Your Heavenly Father has GREAT and PRECIOUS PROMISES for you. Today the promise of eternal life is possible for you. My hope is that through Jesus you will discover the hope, faith and fulfillment that God has ready and waiting. It is as simple as praying this prayer:
“Heavenly Father, I admit that I have been hurt by sin and I have hurt others with my sin as well. I give you my sin wounds and all the sin wounds I have created. I believe you died for all sin and that you rose again to offer eternal life. I repent of my sins, I give you my heart, and I give you my life. Wash me clean. Give me a purpose. Fill me with joy and love so that I might live a hope-filled life. I make you the Savior and Lord of my life. Amen.”
If you prayed that simple prayer, you have been born again. You are starting with a clean slate, and you have entered into a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Make your relationship with God the top priority in your life. Start praying each day: prayer is simply talking to God like you would talk to a friend.
If you don’t have a Bible, please get one. Start reading it each day. Start with Proverbs and the Gospel of John. Mark today’s date, write it down in the Bible you read daily, and remember, this is the day that you found an eternal hope and purpose in the Lord Jesus Christ.
What was your response?
(This article is by James Welch of First Fort Lauderdale Church)