Hope is a powerful force—the strongest proof that our heart is alive.
BUT—we need to understand the nature of hope—so it won’t crush us!
Understanding hope is absolutely invaluable. Hope is powerful—like a hellfire missile—and it must handled with great care. Identifying different levels of hope helps us learn how we should categorize how much we hope in different things. John Eldredge, in his book “All Things New,” identified three kinds of hope:
1. Casual hope: Things that are more trivial like, “I hope it rains,” or “I hope this pie turns out good.” Unfulfilled casual hopes may cause us fleeting worry—but certainly don’t crush us.
2. Special hope: Things that are treasured, deep and meaningful like, “I hope this child is born healthy,” or “I hope my spouse will truly loves me.” These are far deeper and important to our heart and tend to be the subject of our most frequent prayers. Unfulfilled special hopes cause fear and deep anxiety. We eventually recover—because they are not soul-shattering.
3. Ultimate hope: Things that will destroy our heart and soul if they’re never fulfilled, like “I hope God will forgive me,” or, “I hope I see you again,” when a loved one is on their deathbed. Unfulfilled ultimate hopes crush us to the point we may never recover. If it remains unsatisfied, this kind of hope will destroy us. The Bible says:
“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life.” (Proverbs 13:12)
We are now living epic proportions of hopelessness and despair. Young people are killing themselves for senseless reasons. Our general population struggles to make sense of life as the world seems to be be falling apart. Who can we trust? In the chaos we need to have clear direction about WHAT should be our greatest hope!
The BIG problem is, we are unwittingly turning our casual hopes or special hopes—into ultimate hopes. When something that should be a casual hope or special hope is made an ultimate hope; it takes who we are [in Christ] and—completely destroys us. For example, a person who commits suicide because their lover chose someone else, has taken a special hope and made it an ultimate hope. Our disordered hopes take our soul on a suicide mission! Thus…
We need to be very careful about ordering our hopes!
Very few things deserve the place in our heart for ultimate hope; and that’s why God says to love HIM with ALL our heart soul and mind.
A healthy re-ordering our hopes keeps us from being crushed. Do you wonder why your daughter thinks her life is over and needs depression meds because her boyfriend cheated on her? Do you wonder why your teenage son thinks his greatest reality is when he is playing Call of Duty? Do you wonder why your neighbor committed suicide because he lost his job? Do you wonder why the majority of your thoughts are spent obsessing about someone who has hurt you or something you desire that you can’t have?
IT’S TIME TO RE-ORDER YOUR HOPE AND TAKE YOUR LIFE BACK!!!
Re-ordering our hope helps us understand our fears, addictions, and the great longings of our heart. It begins with loving God. When we love God with all of our heart, we are won’t destroy ourselves with lesser hopes. We can weather criticism, loneliness, or the loss of anything that we have hope in. Paul wrote:
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3)
“Lively hope” produces tireless, enthusiastic, God-centered ambition. When we love God with all our heart, our ultimate hope is in HIM and our ultimate desires are satisfied!
God is the “tree of life” and continually satisfies our ultimate desires!
To learn more about Kimberly Faith and the mission of Faith Strong, click HERE.
Out Now – Essential Faith, volume II. Find it on Amazon by clicking HERE.