First Thessalonians 5:18 requires that Christians “give thanks in all circumstances.” While to some this may seem crazy or at least a strange kind of spiritual masochism, the Bible has good reason for directing us to be grateful even when life hurts. For starters, Christians affirm that God is sovereign has good intentions when he enlists trials and pain in the lives of the children he deeply loves. As we parents interact with our young children (assuming we are humble enough to accept that we are God’s “kids”) we should quickly recognize that pain is often a strategic path to healing, maturity and prosperity in this world. If only our kids could see through their immaturity that the bad tasting medicine, the hassle of homework, or sting of discipline will eventually yield great benefit, then perhaps they, like us, could learn to complain less and even find the strength to be grateful in the face of circumstances that are less than fun. May God give us the maturity to “give thanks” in good times and bad.
“I hope all is well!” “I hope to see you soon.” “I hope I don’t have any cavities when I visit the dentist.” “Here’s hoping!”
Like many words in our vernacular, the word hope is often tossed around casually and even mechanically. It comes to our lips spontaneously without a thought to its meaning or significance. Most of the time we use the word hope, we are really expressing a wish. It amounts to saying something along the lines of “it sure would be nice if such and such would happen.” But there is so much more to the biblical word “hope”.
In the Bible, hope refers to a confident expectation of a future event. This is not just wishful thinking; instead, hope is closely related to trust. It is the joyful anticipation of something we are certain is going to come about.
For your donation this month at Focal Point, we would like to send you a book titled Hope Again by Chuck Swindoll. This book explores the practical ways our hope in Christ moves us beyond our daily struggles. You will learn from a biblical standpoint how to find hope beyond failure, temptation, guilt, unfairness, immaturity, bitterness and more. Chuck calls this “A book for all who sincerely search for ways to hope again when your life hurts and your dreams fade.”
Request Hope Again with your donation this month.
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