Psalms: 37:1-18, 37:19-42
Old Testament: Hab 3:1-18
Gospel: John 17:1-8
One of the reasons I am a Christian is because Christians have hope. We can have hope because Christ’s sacrifice allows us to. I cannot imagine being without hope. I have travelled in some very poor places, including Africa and Haiti, where I have seen people in seemingly hopeless situations. And yet, I think I see more hopelessness in the faces of the people right in my neighborhood and workplace, people who seem to have no belief that there is something better than this. Talk about depressing!
Psalm 37 speaks of this hope so clearly. “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: he will make your righteousness shine like the dawn…” Those who believe are entitled to delight in the Lord; but they (we) still have a job to do. We also have to commit ourselves to the Lord. In Paul’s letter to the Philippians, he goes on to describe the prize that waits for those who continue to do the work of Christ. That prize: everlasting life.
Hope is one of the major lessons of Lent and Easter. While the crucifixion is a horrific event, it was necessary for Christ to endure such horror to set us free from our sin. It is the sole reason we have hope. What we have in the here and now has nothing to do with what we will have in the hereafter – only because Christ died for our sins and opened the door to everlasting life.
Do you look for hope in your everyday life? It can be in the smallest of places -- in someone’s kindness, or perhaps in your child’s story of success with a school assignment or test. Where have you seen or heard or spoken about hope? How can you express hope to those around you?