It seems like the appropriate time to ask the question.
Things going wrong all around. Inside and out, there doesn’t seem to be anything going right at all. So when all of that is kicking off the question is reasonable:
Where is your hope now?
Underneath that question is something that suggests that if the hope was worthwhile then these kind of situations wouldn’t be happening. If the hope was worthwhile then why is it so dim and far away in the context of these trying circumstances. If the hope is worthwhile where is it now in the midst of the pain, the confusion, the loss?
Behind that there is an essential challenge that says the hope is not worthwhile. The hope is a sham. The hope is a pitiful refuge for the delusional. So for the sake of the exercise, there’s no point holding on to the futility of this hope.
Let go. Give up. Sack the hope.
Whilst all of that is understandable in the circumstances, it neglects something fundamental about the hope. Namely that the hope is greater and over the circumstances. The hope before us – the Living Hope before us – really is far beyond and far greater that the immediacy of the pain, the confusion, the loss and the lack that is experienced. Indeed it is the confidence in this Living Hope that provides the means to endure in the circumstances. This Living Hope reminds those that go through that their position is actually above the circumstances where the Living Hope is seated in the heavenly places at the right hand side of God.
The power found in the Living Hope is able to bring healing and restoration in the physical. He is able. Even if that is not experienced immediately there is still peace and consolation to be found in the Living Hope. Knowing that the whole point of the Hope is about what is to come – what is ahead. What we have now in us and keeping us going, nudges us towards what is to come. It is an invitation to allow the present perspective to be seen in the context of the Living Hope who was, and is and is to come.
This approach is crucial in response to the question of where the hope is now. The Living Hope has not departed the scene. The Living Hope is not one of convenience that’s there for the pleasant times and disappears in rocky periods. The Living Hope is right there with us. Encouraging us as we struggle, comforting us as we suffer and reminding us of that which is the reality right in the situation.
The question that might have been designed to cultivate doubt can be just as much an opportunity to incite faith – great faith. Faith to hold on to the reality that when we’re asked where is our hope we can answer through the tears, in a whisper, holding out …
He is here with us. Jesus Christ – our Living Hope – is here.
For His Name’s Sake
C. L. J. Dryden