Where is Your Hope? – Finding Fulfillment in Christ
When the Apostle Peter wrote to the early Christians, he charged them to be ready to give an answer for their hope. As they walked through their days, they expected to have people question them because of the hope they displayed. This is an assumed part of their faith. It’s a remarkable assumption.
Our faith is not meant to be hidden, it should permeate every aspect of our lives. The newness of our life in Christ should permeate all we do.
So why have I only been asked a handful of times about my “odd” behavior? Where is my hope when I’m trudging through the work day or ordering my dark roast, no cream, from Starbucks? Where is my hope?
Too often, it is buried under the frustrations of the day. Instead of hopeful, I’m annoyed with the puppies scratching at the door when I want to read. My future in Christ is overshadowed with the life of laundry, dishes, and grocery shopping.
How do I reclaim it? What does it look like to align my days with the Living Hope?
What if it looked like knowing I am blessed?
The Beatitudes reclaim the narrative of what it means to be blessed from a world that desires easy living. The poor in spirit… the mourning… the meek… those persecuted for righteousness…These are the people Jesus said were blessed.
If I’m going to live in my hope, I cannot let my mind fall prey to the world’s standard of blessings. Giving in to the idea that the rich, the well-loved, and the great hair day havers are the blessed, will quickly send my hope plummeting. My mind must be forced captive to the truth of God’s eternal perspective. When I am hungering for righteousness, when I am impoverished in spirit, then I am rich in blessings.
My hope isn’t found in today. There isn’t much true hope in my day-to-day. My ambitions are nothing without the eternal perspective of the God who ordains time. But with that perspective, even my mundane tasks can be infused with deep hope.
Daily life has little to inspire hope, but we are not called to focus on daily life. Others focus on the earthly things. As believers, we stand apart when from the world when our gaze is fixed on the living, breathing King. We are anchored firmly by His blood and through His intercession as our High Priest before the throne of the Father.
Let’s encourage one another to fix our eyes upon His face and our mind upon this truth.
Our hope is not in the perishable things of the world. We do not hope in 401Ks or presidential elections. Our faith does not waver with the ups and downs of the stock market or the changing seasons of life. The truth that shatters anxieties, that roots our hearts, is found in our baptism, in our identity as His chosen and redeemed. When I passed through the waters of the baptismal, I was set apart for this hope-filled, never-ending life.
I was established as new. Bailey is dead. I am alive as a new creation in Christ. My baptism appeals to the Resurrection, to our Hope. My hope is not in who I am or what I can do but in what He has already done for me. My laboring can stop. I am blessed simply because I am His. My eternity is sealed by the Lamb of God.
And neither life nor death, not angels nor demons can separate me from His always pursuing, never-failing, ever-faithful love. At the end of my days, and at the end of today, that is where my hope is found.
When I fix this to the front of my mind, I cannot help but stand apart. This is the hope Peter saw in the the early Church. Deep, abiding hope that carried past daily life and into eternity is what drew others to notice and ask questions.
So I now go into my today and my tomorrows with a renewed vigor to hope in the Lord. When anxieties arise within my chest, when frustrations and darkness and confusion arise, I can breathe in this life and breathe out despair. My days are held and I am sustained by the Maker of the stars and the Redeemer of mankind. Therein lies my hope.
Want to dig into the scriptures that inspired today’s post? Read 1 Peter 3:8-17, Matthew 5:2-11, Matthew 6:25-34, 1 Peter 3:18-22, Psalm 23, and Romans 8:38-39