Confident expectation…

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As I sit at “The Pastor’s Desk” pondering this month’s “Words Of Hope”… I was led to look up the definition of hope in Webster’s… (Yes… The dictionary people) and here is what I found… Hope – to want something to happen or to think that something could be true.

Now the biblical definition of hope, however, is a little bit different and as followers of Jesus Christ the hope we have is a different kind of hope than that which is defined by Webster’s…

It is a hope defined by Jesus… And the hope of Jesus is not just a fleeting, momentary, earthly kind of hoping but a permanent, eternal, and spiritual hope that comes from a blessed assurance of who God is and whose we are…

Oh… And the biblical definition of hope… A confident expectation… There is no doubt… We are confident of this… And we wait… In expectation… For all to be revealed in God’s timing…

But in our waiting… We don’t just sit idly by in confident expectation… For God expects something from us as well…

And what God expects from us is for us to be ready to share with others the reason why we have such confident expectation… How we can have a hope in what seems like many a hopeless situation… a hope that seems at odds with the hope the world offers… A hope that runs countercultural… A hope not based in the here and now… But in the there and then… It is the there and then that is behind the door that we hope for… And it is explained well through this story that came across my desk as I was finishing up these words of hope… This story sums up what confident expectation looks like through the eyes of a dog…

A sick man turned to his doctor as he was preparing to leave the examination room and said, “Doctor, I am afraid to die. Tell me what lies on the other side.” Very quietly, the doctor said, “I don’t know…” “You don’t know? You are a Christian man, and yet you do not know what’s on the other side?” The Doctor was holding the handle of the door; on the other side came a sound of scratching and whining, and as he opened the door, a dog sprang into the room and leaped on him with an eager show of gladness. Turning to the patient, the doctor said, “Did you notice my dog? He’s never been in this room before. He didn’t know what was inside. He knew nothing except that his master was here, and when the door opened, he sprang in without fear. I know little of what is on the other side of death, but this one thing I do know… I know that my Master is there and that is more than enough.”

The apostle Peter says this about hope: “…in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect…” 1 Peter 3:15

Beloved… May we always be prepared to offer with gentleness and respect why we believe what we believe… and the reason for the hope that we experience through faith in Christ Jesus…

May the peace of Christ and the hope that He provides remain with you now and always,

Pastor Wayne