a reminder for the days when we feel hopeless

a reminder for the days when we feel hopeless ... because we are never without HOPE in Christ

Welcome to day 26 of STAND OUT: 7 traits of a counter cultural life. You can find every post in this series indexed here.

a reminder for the days when we feel hopeless ... because we are never without HOPE in Christ

3.1 million children die every year because of malnutrition and starvation. {source}

Little girls are sold as sex slaves for $165. {source}

ISIS is infiltrating refugee camps to murder Christians. {source}

This morning on Facebook I shared a blog post titled, “The Day Human Trafficking Got a Name. His Name Is Daniel.” This sobering account of one woman’s interactions with an enslaved little boy on the beach in Mexico left me undone.  Last week I shared a letter John Piper wrote to an eleven-year-old boy who wanted to know why God let his family be hungry. The week before that I wrote this:

There is no room for silence from the American church. While we decide which congregation best meets our preferences, our brothers and sisters are being martyred. We cannot put our heads in the sand. Christian populations are shrinking in many places because believers are being killed faster than converts are being made.
Come, Lord Jesus … And until He does, may the Church rise up.

And I shared this link: Boy, 12, among dozen tortured and crucified by ISIS in latest atrocity, says aid group.

There are days when the happenings in our world leave me gasping for breath and aching for the day Jesus returns. Recent stories in our local news are no less gut-wrenching than on the national and international stages.

It looks hopeless. If feels hopeless. And without Jesus, it is hopeless. This dark, broken, sinful world seems destined to self-destruct. And we feel helpless to do anything of significance.

{I know, this is heavy for Monday … but stick with me, please.}

Hopelessness is one of the greatest strategies of our enemy.

I’m convinced of it. When we feel hopeless, we also feel helpless and then we become stagnant. We read the statistics and hear the stories but find ourselves disconnected from the people in them.  We continue in our daily lives with our busy schedules and full bellies and indulged children and beautiful churches and forget about those who will die today from starvation, those who are enslaved to meet the salacious demands of others, those who will be martyred for their faith.

Oh we’ll see the clips on the news and the headlines in our social media feeds. We might even click over the read the stories. But then we’ll watch the YouTube video of a cat playing piano or take the Buzzfeed quiz to find out which Disney character we are most like … and the aching needs of very real people all over the world {and in our own communities} will be quickly forgotten.

Hopelessness makes us numb to the hurting around us.  Because we believe there is nothing we can do, we no longer see the eyes of those in need.

Hopelessness makes us numb to the hurting around us. Hope gets involved. #StandOut Click To Tweet

Hope is counter cultural.

Hopelessness makes us numb to the hurting around us. Because we believe there is nothing we can do, we no longer see the eyes of those in need. Hope is counter cultural. Hope is radical. Hope doesn’t ignore or make light of the brokenness around us. Hope doesn’t step back from the ugliness. Hope doesn’t refuse to make eye contact. Hope gets involved. Hope steps into the mess. Hope touches the dirty and poor and sick and enslaved. Hope says there’s something more … Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23

Hope is radical. Hope doesn’t ignore or make light of the brokenness around us. Hope doesn’t step back from the ugliness. Hope doesn’t refuse to make eye contact.

Hope gets involved. Hope steps into the mess. Hope touches the dirty and poor and sick and enslaved. Hope says there’s something more …

 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23

We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain. Hebrews 6:19

Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:2

Our hope isn’t in political parties or military intervention. We don’t place our confidence in governmental policies or even in church programs. Our hope is in Jesus alone.

Yes, this world is broken. Yes, we ache for the tragedy around us.

But above all, we have hope …

While we wait for the blessed hope – the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. Titus 2:13 NIV

And so we do what hope does, what Jesus did … we get involved. We share our hope with those around us. We proclaim the gospel as we give a cup of water, make room for the orphans, and give generously to those in need.

We are not Pollyannas who deny the devastation around us. But neither are we Chicken Littles with eyes only for gloom and doom. We are image-bearers of the Creator … and in His image we proclaim hope through His Son, Jesus Christ.

As this week begins, let us enter it with hope and with the strength He gives …

But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.  Isaiah 40:31

xo,

Teri Lynne

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge