Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hope in God's Word

All hope of our being saved was at last abandoned.

That's how Luke, the author of the Acts of the Apostles', put it.  He was accompanying Paul on his trip to Rome for Paul's hearing with Caesar.  In chapter 27, he tells how the ship they were sailing on ran into a violent storm and not one action the crew took seemed to lead to safety.  As Luke recounts, they all had given up hope of being saved.

But Paul comes with good news.  An angel, a messenger from God, came to Paul and assured the apostle that he would stand before Caesar and plead his case.  Not only that, Paul learned that not only he would be saved but all on the ship would live to see many more days.

Does Paul put his faith in his safety because an angel appeared to him?  No, Paul's faith is rooted in something much greater than an angelic being. His faith is securely placed in God's Word.

So take heart, men, for I have faith in God that it will be exactly as I have been told.  (Acts 27:25)

Paul teaches us something very important.  We have times in our lives when events or circumstances can make life feel hopeless.  And it's impossible to live without hope.

Where does the Christian turn when a loved one is fighting for life...when financial disaster is impending...when a grandchild is making one bad choice after another...when the love of your life says, "I don't love you anymore."

Hopeless situations call on us to flee to the God of hope.

But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.  (Psalm 39:7)

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints...  (Ephesians 1:18)

Through (Christ) you believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him, and so your faith and hope are in God.  (1 Peter 1:21)

What to do when life seems hopeless? Stand on the promises of God's Word.  He will never leave us or forsake us.  He is our mighty fortress to whom we can turn.  He never slumbers nor sleeps but is always watching over us.  He cares for those who belong to Him.  (See Deut. 31:6 - Psalm 46:1 - Psalm 121:4,8 - Psalm 23)

Life is never hopeless when you are standing on God's Word and promises.  Trust in the Lord.  Your hope is in Him!