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Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Hope!

Continuing from the previous post, may I suggest that the first anchor should be hope?  The writer of the Letter to the Hebrews, speaking of the impossibility of God ever proving to be false, says, "We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain." (6:19).  As long as we have hope, sunk deed down in our inmost being, then life cannot ever destroy us.  It may, and often will, hurt us, but it cannot break us.  As long as hope holds out, we may weather the fiercest storm.

Most will be familiar with the old adage: "Where there's life, there's hope."  I would suggest that it is equally true (if not more so!) to say that "Where there's hope, there's life."!  Many of the survivors of the Holocaust have spoken of the hope that kept them going in the midst of the most terrible of conditions.  In many countries, today, there are those who are persecuted - predominantly those who profess a Christian faith - but who live in hope.  I can never forget the commercial traveller who, during a particularly bad snowfall in the N.E. of Scotland survived being buried for some days, in his car - when others had succumbed to the cold, and to the difficulty in breathing.  His comment, when rescued, was: "I never gave up hope!"

Of course, the hope that is an anchor for the soul is not just a vague optimism that 'things will turn out alright; that, as Dickens' character, Mr Micawber, would have said, "Something will turn up!"  Rather, it is the hope of which Paul writes to the early disciples of Jesus in Colossae: "Christ in you, the hope of glory." (Col.1:27).  It is, in fact, more than hope, in the popular sense of the word.  It is an assurance that is based on the unchangeable character of Almighty God.

One of the old hymns states:
"My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name." (Edward Mote)

Do you have the anchor of hope on board, today?  Is that hope grounded in the Lord, Jesus the Christ?  I encourage you to hope in Him.  It will be for your good, and to His glory.

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