Hope Deferred

November 2, 2016

Hope Deferred

Proverbs 13:12

Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but [when] the desire cometh, [it is] a tree of life.

Have you ever hoped and prayed for something that seemed like it would never come to pass?  I think we all have hoped in such a way and we probably still are.  It is hope that compels us in life.  The Word says we were birthed in hope.  Psalms 22:9 says, “But thou [art] he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope [when I was] upon my mother’s breasts.”  God instilled a hope within us.   It is in the knowledge of God and His Word that we have hope.  We stand upon the promises of God, faith being the substance of our hope.  It is faith and hope that bond us to our God.  Psalms 33:18 expresses, “Behold, the eye of the LORD [is] upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy.”  

If we were all honest we would probably admit that there are times when our hope and our faith run thin.  There are times when all of the odds seem to be against us and there is no hope in sight.  We begin to question and then to doubt.  The heartbeat of our hope becomes shallow and weak. We faint because it seems we have endured so long without beholding the substance and if the substance of faith fails to stand in the gap of that which we believe for then hope begins to fail us.  In these times we must encourage our souls even as King David did on more than one occasion.  Several times He speaks this scripture including Psalms 42:11, “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, [who is] the health of my countenance, and my God.”  He often encouraged his own soul not to lose hope by such words as Psalms 71:5 and 14, “For thou [art] my hope, O Lord GOD: [thou art] my trust from my youth.” “But I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more.”  It was the encouragement of praise that He used to encourage his waning soul back into the position of faith and hope.  

Romans 5 teaches us that hope isn’t something we often realize right away it, but it is something that we believe so strongly in that we won’t give up.  Verses 1-5 teach us, “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. 3Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.”  Everything around us and the circumstances in the natural can testify against our hope in God’s Word, but we know that ‘God is not a man that He should lie, neither the son of man that He should repent.  Has he said and shall He not do it or has He spoken and shall He not make it good (Numbers 23:19)?’ Against all odds never lose your hope and confidence in God.  We may not understand His hand or His ways, but we can trust His heart and His Word will not fail.  Our hope isn’t in this life and the linear matter of time, it is in the eternal and the everlasting God, Lord and Savior that has called us to salvation and eternal hope.  Paul makes this statement about this present time and age in 1 Corinthians 15:19, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.”  Things are quite likely to be very rough at times in this life, but it is not in this life that we hope, it is in the life of Christ that transcends time and space.  Philippians 1:20 also states, “According to my earnest expectation and [my] hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but [that] with all boldness, as always, [so] now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether [it be] by life, or by death.”  

Don’t attach your hopes to this life, but put it in the one who is life.  Hope that is prolonged does make our heart sick and it is often hard to hold on too, but when the desire and the fulfillment of it comes, it is a tree of life; even the very life of Christ made manifest. 




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