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158 Hope is Essential to Life

There are many things we can do without in life but hope is not one of them. It is essential to have hope for life to be meaningful. In fact many who give up on life do so because they have lost hope. We take a careful look at hope in this episode and differentiate between hope, wishing, false hope and fantasy. God's unfailing love is the source of hope and is a gift from Jesus. Hope comes from hearing the gospel and can be inspired in each other as we notice and comment on the good we see in each other. There is a story in the pdf document that we did not tell in the podcast. Go to the website and download it to enjoy. www.rediscoveringgod.ca



158 Hope
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SHOW NOTES


Faith, HOPE, and Love


And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13).


Hope


North America has and continues to offer hope to millions of people beyond the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and beyond its southern border.Inscription inside Statue of Liberty.


"Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless,

tempest-tossed to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Emma Lazarus, 1883


The reason we hope, or despair is because we have desires within us. We hope for food when we are hungry.We hope for warmth when we are cold.We hope for love when we feel alone.


We hope for a future when faced with mortality.We hope for that which we do not have and long for.


Hope is not to be confused with wishing, false hope, and fantasies.


Wishing


Wishing is based on wanting. We can deceive ourselves by wishing long enough until the wish becomes a false hope.

Most young adults wish for a life partner.

A wish is based on what you want.

Many sincere seniors wish for the Second Coming in their lifetime.

They have no hope for this event since the apparent signs for the Second Coming have been with us for 2000 years.

The ill wish for a miracle of healing.Parents wish for a change in the character of a child or grandchild.

Some wish to become rich and powerful and buy lottery tickets or gamble in another way.


False Hope


It is possible to live with false hope which will result in discouragement, dismay, and depression when it becomes clear that this hope will never materialize. (Praying to win the lottery.)

Advertising often exploits false hope to increase sales

.Religious leaders exploit inherent selfishness to promise health, wealth, and wisdom.

Part of the suffering of getting older is we begin to realize that many of our dreams will never materialize.


Fantasy.


Rubbing the lamp and a genie appears!

Send me at least $10 and I will pray for your health, wealth, and wisdom.

Buy a lottery ticket.


Hope


Hope is based on evidence.


Hope is more than positive thinking.

Nothing wrong with positive thinking but it is not hope.

There are those who are terminally ill but remain cheerful to the end because of the cultivation of optimism during life.

Hope is based on someone’s promise or an experience or something achievable you are working towards.

Some people wished they were rich but never saved a cent.

Other people save every cent they can in the hope they will be financially secure.

Even some of these never have anything much to rely on.

Do salespeople have more hope than other people?

Do pessimists have less hope than other people?


To be hopeless is to be the saddest person on the planet.

To have hope is to have life, energy, and joy.

May you have the hope Paul refers to in 1 Corinthians 13:13, every day.


Victor Frankl: those who have hope will survive better than those who do not!

We all need HOPE.


Where does hope come from?


Hope is generated in our hearts by God’s Unfailing Love.


Psalm 147:11 (NIV) the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.

Matthew 12:21 (NIV) In his name the nations will put their hope.

Romans 5:5 (NIV) And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

1 Timothy 4:10 (NIV) (and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.

Jesus gifts us with Hope

Colossians 1:27 (NIV) To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

1 Peter 1:3 (NIV) Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

1 Timothy 1:1 (NIV) Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the command of God our Savior and of Christ Jesus our hope,

Titus 2:13 (NIV) while we wait for the blessed hope, the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,


Samaritan woman (self-doubt to believer in the Messiah and in herself), John 4:39-42 Mary Magdalene (7 devils to loving Jesus), Mark 16:9; Luke 8:2

Thief on the Cross (Mocker to friend), Luke 23:39-43

John (Denier to caregiver), John 19:25-27

Peter (Rescued from despair of fishing to joy of gospeling) John 21:15-19

Thomas (Doubt to delight), JOhn 20:24-29


Hope, in turn, generates Faith, Love and Energy.


Colossians 1:5 (NIV) the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for

you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel.


Isaiah 40:31 (NIV) but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will

soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not faint.


Hope generates Joy and Peace.


Romans 12:12 (NIV) Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.


Romans 15:13 (NIV) May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.


Ephesians 1:18 (NIV) 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,


Colossians 1:23 (NIV) if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.


Isaac and Jesus Christ are the two supernatural children of Hope.


Isaac was hoped for for 25 years


Romans 4:18B25 (NIV) 18 Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, ASo shall your offspring be.@ 19 Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. 20 Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, 21 being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. 22 This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.” 23 The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone, 24 but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness” for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. 25 He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.


Messiah was hoped for for 4000 years. Luke 2:8-11


How shall we give each other hope?


  1. We rehearse the gospel to each other.

  2. We personalize the gospel.”For God so loved Ian . . .”

  3. We notice and comment on the good we see in each other.



Who you are does make a difference!


A teacher in New York decided to honour each of her seniors in High School by telling them the difference each of them had made. She called each student to the front of the class, one at a time. First, she told each of them how they had made a difference to her, and the class. Then she presented each of them with a blue ribbon, imprinted with gold letters, which read, "Who I Am Makes a Difference."


Afterwards, the teacher decided to do a class project, to see what kind of impact recognition would have on a Community. She gave each of the students three more blue ribbons, and instructed them to go out and spread this acknowledgment ceremony. Then they were tofollow up on the results, see who honoured whom, and report back to the class in about a week.


One of the boys in the class went to a junior executive in a nearby Company, and honoured him for helping him with his career planning. He gave him a blue ribbon, and put it on hisshirt. Then he gave him two extra ribbons and said, "We're doing a class project on recognition, and we'd like for you to go out, find somebody to honour, give them a blue ribbon, then give them the extra blue ribbon so they can acknowledge a third person, to keep this acknowledgment ceremony going. Then please report back to me and tell me what happened."


Later that day, the junior executive went in to see his boss, who had been noted, by the way, as being kind of a grouchy fellow. He sat his boss down, and he told him that he deeplyadmired him for being a creative genius. The boss seemed very surprised. The junior executive asked him if he would accept the gift of the blue ribbon, and would he give him permission to put it on him.


His surprised boss said, "Well, sure." The junior executive took the blue ribbon and placed it right on his boss's jacket, above his heart. As he gave him the last extra ribbon, he said, "Would you take this extra ribbon, and pass it on by honouring somebody else. The young boy who first gave me the ribbons is doing a project in school, and we want to keep this recognition ceremony going and find out how it affects people."


That night, the boss came home to his 14-year-old son, and sat him down. He said, "The most incredible thing happened to me today. I was in my office, and one of the junior executives came in and told me he admired me, and gave me a blue ribbon for being a creative genius. Imagine! He thinks I'm a creative genius! Then he put this blue ribbon that says, "Who I Am Makes a Difference", on my jacket above my heart. He gave me an extra ribbon and asked me to find somebody else to honour.


As I was driving home tonight, I started thinking about whom I would honour with this ribbon, and I thought about you. I want to honour you. My days are really hectic and when I come home, I don't pay a lot of attention to you. Sometimes I scream at you for not getting good enough grades in school, and for your bedroom being a mess. But tonight, I just wanted to sit here and, well, just let you know that you do make a difference to me. Besides your mother, you are the most important person in my life. You're a great kid, and I love you!"


The startled boy started to sob and sob, and he couldn't stop crying. His whole body shook. He looked up at his father and said through his tears, "Dad, earlier tonight I sat in my room and wrote a letter to you and Mom, explaining why I had killed myself, and I asked you to forgive me. I was going to commit suicide tonight after you were asleep. I just didn't think that you cared at all. The letter is upstairs. I don't think I need it after all."


His father walked upstairs and found the letter full of anguish and pain. The boss went back to work a changed man. He was no longer a grouch, but made sure to let all of his employees know that they made a difference. The junior executive helped several other young people with career planning, and never forgot to let them know that they made a difference in his life...one being the boss' son. And the young boy and his classmates learned a valuable lesson, "Who you are DOES make a difference". Live YOUR Life With Passion!


Ian Hartley, April 2024

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