Blessed hope is a joyful hope. An I-am-so-happy-hope. Fortunate-to-know-God hope. Blessed hope is a hope that is not a maybe, but a hope that gives us confidence and security. It is hope that helps us stand strong in what we believe and keeps us standing when trials or opposition come our way.
** Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ ** Titus 2:13
This life gives no guarantee for happiness. Trouble can show up without warning. Unexpected news can stop us in our tracks and change a happy day into a solemn one or a peaceful one into chaos.
Trouble can reach us in every area of our lives. Possible sources are: doctors, teachers, family, friends, work, finances, vehicles, television, news…the list is endless because trouble can come from anywhere.
** In the world ye shall have tribulation ** John 6
The thing about trouble that is toughest to deal with is that we fall into the deception that we are above it. We often fool ourselves into thinking that we have created a peaceful, safe, prosperous, healthy personal world. But an unexpected text message or phone call can shatter that illusion in an instant. Messages or news like:
‘someone you love has passed away’
‘your house has been broken into and everything with monetary value is gone’
‘I am sorry to have to tell you this, but you have cancer’
‘ I want a divorce’
‘ your child has run away’
Bad news has no manners. It barges into our lives uninvited. Its force of impact is determined by how self-deceived we are. The more we think ‘that can never happen to me’, the harder the news will hit us. Allowing ourselves to be deceived that we can make this life perfect will only bring us disappointment. Clinging to the things of this world or its people will only set us up for an overpowering and possibly crushing reality check.
But when we live truly leaning on our blessed hope, the joyful hope that things are only going to be perfect when we are face to face with Jesus, any unexpected news is taken with less impact.
Recently, my husband and I received a late night overseas phone call that a beloved family member had suffered a stroke.
This news set our life in motion in a direction completely different than we had planned for the coming days. We quickly arranged our flights and packed our bags. Next, we cancelled a month of work and appointments in our regular life and ministry. All of our plans for the coming month were erased by one phone call.
But God was not caught off guard or overwhelmed by this change. His priorities and His picture for our lives were different from ours and His call to us to redirect ours was clear.
The Lord’s version of our plans evolved into a month of family and friend time. It was a time filled with grace and strength that only the Lord can provide. It turned into a time that we are grateful for. A time that filled our hearts with joy. An unplanned time that ultimately ended with good news and a positive outcome. An interruption that God **worked together for good. **
It is easy for any of us to get caught up in our own plans. We can get tunnel vision. But the Lord sends us reminders to keep our eyes on His plans and His future for us. Reminders that force us to look up and to look beyond this life and its busyness. Kind reminders that our plans and goals and time frame are not always in sync with His.
There is an old song that reminds us of where our heart and our priorities should be…
“This world is not my home I’m just a-passing through /My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door/ And I can’t feel at home In this world anymore”
When those unexpected interruptions come into our planned and peaceful lives… When life turns upside down overnight…
Look for the Blessed Hope. Look beyond our today and look at the peace and joy and beauty that is waiting for us. The Hope that there will be no more tears, no more frightening news, no more disappointment, no more heartache and loss.
Remember that this world cannot compare to the wonder of Heaven and seeing Jesus in all his glory.
** Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ **