Monday, October 26, 2009

When Hope Hurts

Hebrews 11:1-3

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

For by it the elders obtained a good report.

Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.

When Hope Hurts

I was watching a T.V. show where the broken hero saw someone who looked like his long dead, beloved wife. It was a take on the plot of Hitchcock’s “VERTIGO.” The hero started to believe that the woman he was seeing was his wife returning to him.

Once he realized the deception, he told his sidekick that for the first time in a long time, he had had hope…and it hurt. His assistant had to remind him that hope wasn’t the enemy but in fact was a good thing.

I understood the line “Hope hurts.” Hope can hurt when it operates by itself. You only have to look into the eyes of a child who gets underwear for a gift when he was hoping for a new race car set. Hope was never meant to operate alone. Having hope alone is like having a car with no gas in it; it ain’t going nowhere.


Hope doesn’t activate faith. Faith makes hope real.

When FAITH is in its proper place and becomes the substance, the reality, the tangible, taste-able, touchable part of what you hope for, then hope can’t hurt. Hope springs alive because of faith. Hope keeps us looking to the hills for our help from the Lord because faith fuels what we hope for.

We have hope in our salvation because we receive by faith that Jesus died for our sins. We then hope in everything else (receiving the Comforter, greater works, treasure in heaven, kept in perfect peace, follow after the Spirit and not fulfill the lust of the flesh, grafted into relationship as the sons of God and on and on) because of that faith. Hallelujah!

Faith lives. That’s why we’re told in I Corinthians 13:13 that faith abides along with hope and charity. Faith is an active, living thing. This can’t make sense to the carnal mind. It’s not supposed to. It is truly a spiritual thing.

Where is your hope? Is your hope in things around you? Is your hope in your own personal prosperity? Is your hope in people? Is it in your job? Is your hope in things temporal? Or is your hope, as the song says, in things eternal?

It’s true that we can come up hopeless sometimes. Hope really does hurt when we feel the weight of the world on our shoulders; when we get singed by the fires that rage around us. Hope hurts when we get lost and wander off the path that the Lord has set before us.

But, as Jeremiah wrote in Lamentations, we have to look at those losses, those wanderings and still find where faith abides. Then hope won’t hurt but it will refresh as it fulfills God’s promise to our spirit and propels us to wait until we see the fulfillement in the natural.

Lamentations 3:18-26

And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the LORD:

Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall.

My soul hath them still in remembrance, and is humbled in me.

This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.

It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.

The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.

It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.


- Sis. Stephanie Robinson

Lifeline is the evangelistic ministry of Fellowship Church in Jonesboro, GA.

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Fellowship Church
455 HWY 138 Suite C
Jonesboro, GA 30238
Alton Watkins, Pastor

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