“Hope springs eternal…”
That’s how Alexander Pope’s Essay of Man starts. It’s the line that popped in my mind a few weekends ago when Greg started talking about miracles and hope. Hope springs eternal? Are you kidding me? Have you seen our world lately?
Hope doesn’t seem so eternal in the eyes of this world because in a few places, it looks like hope checked out a long time ago. It doesn’t take more than a quick scroll through the news feed to think that maybe hope has met its match. Unrest in Greece, violence in Asia, and of course, fighting in the Middle East is enough to put hope on the endangered species list.
Let’s be honest… a quick look at your own life might cause hope to fade. “I gave up hope a long time ago.” That might sound familiar to you. In fact, you might have even said those same words yourself at one point. That’s what I see at times as a pastor and as a friend: so much pain, so little hope, if any at all…
… but what if hope wasn’t all lost? What if hope was closer than we thought? What if the darkness of “what is” was replaced with the hope of “what could be”? What if we were this close to a new reality?
There’s something about hope though that still draws us to it, even in the darkest of times. Hope is what keeps you going back to the counselor. Hope is calling your separated spouse to talk… and listen. Hope is praying for God to give you a miracle, even if the miraculous makes no sense at all. Hope is a sunrise…
…what happens when you see the sun rise? Is it a new beginning or a reminder of the night before? A sunrise is a new day ahead, another chance to see “what could be” replace what is right now.
God is a God of hope and He’s all about taking the brokenness and hurt of today and restoring it into what could be tomorrow. It’s the hope of heaven and believing that God is big enough to change our current realities that make us hold onto hope.
That’s what the Apostle Paul wrote about in Romans 8 when he said, “We hope for what we don’t have yet. So we are patient as we wait for it.” That’s what we hold onto, the promise that God’s in the business of bringing hope. It’s a new day and “what could be” is where we point our faith. Hope is believing in a God big enough to change the reality of right now.