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Monday, November 11, 2013

Our Only Hope

1 Timothy 1: 1, Paul, a missionary of Jesus Christ, sent out by the direct command of God our Savior and by Jesus Christ our Lord-our only hope. TLB
I can remember when our sons were babies and learning to stand up on their own. They would crawl over to the coffee table or a piece of furniture and raise themselves up. The furniture gave them the confidence that they needed to take a step without being fearful of falling. Likewise, all of us from our earliest stages of life have learned how to depend on and place our hope in “things” to keep us safe.
We use the life lessons that we have learned, and we place our confidence and hope in natural elements for security. After a while, we begin to rely on those objects and people to support us to the point that we become totally comfortable and at rest. Unfortunately, there are times when we discover that not everything we rely on is trustworthy. Objects break, and people will fail us, causing our faith to be violated and our hope to be lost.
Let me share a scenario with you that will demonstrate a principle about hope. Life is a lot like taking a cruise on a ship. Because of its strong structure and enormous size, it gives us a sense of safety while it’s heading out into the deep. Consequently, the longer we are on the ship the more comfortable we become with its ability to keep us safe. We begin to relax and enjoy the comforts that the cruise liner offers its passengers.
However, suddenly we realize that the ship is headed directly into a horrific storm. As the ship becomes tossed by the large waves and strong winds, the furniture that we took rest in has now become a flying object. We begin to grab onto anything that is firmly attached to the ship for stability. As the ship is tossed to and fro, we begin to lose our grip, and we are thrown around like a rag doll.
Now the confidence and the hope that we once rested in has all but disappeared, and we begin to fear for our very lives. The more the storm intensifies, the greater our desperation becomes about our survival. In a panic-stricken moment, we realize that everything we have placed our trust and hope in has turned against us.
Out of hopelessness, we look up to heaven and turn our focus on the Lord. Why... because He is the anchor for our soul. When this life begins to unravel and fall apart, God is our Rock in whom we can rely and know of a surety that He won’t fail us. The writer of Hebrews tells us that He is a very present help in a time of trouble. Nothing in this life is eternal. Everything and everyone at one point or another will fail us. Only Jesus will be there for us when this world and the people in it fail us and break our trust.
When we think of storms, we tend to think about them only in a negative connotation because we’ve seen what they can do to human life and property. Nevertheless, there are some good things that the storms of life can produce. Whether they’re natural, emotional, relational, or spiritual storms can break us of placing our eternal trust in temporal things and relationships. Storms can teach us that only God is the TRUE ANCHOR for our souls.
If you have been broken because a job, a spouse, or a possession failed you don’t despair; there is still hope after the storm. Jesus is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. When the world walks out on you, you can turn to Him, and He will walk in and pick you up. He is the blessed assurance that can never fail you. He will be faithful and go with you, even to the end.
What could you be trusting in today that might be gone tomorrow and leave you devastated? Everything on this earth has been built by man has a breaking point. Even so, the Lord upholds the universe; and He will hold you when your world crumbles. Jesus is our only hope for eternal life. Are your faith and your hope in Him today?
My Hope Is in the Lord,
Pastor Asa Dockery

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