Have you got a hope ?
I’ve listened to pain filled personal stories of several farm folks this winter. It seems the common theme would be “I need to find some hope for the future.”
Why do very few people participate in the Good Friday service, a gathering which focuses on the ultimate sacrifice that the Son of God made on our behalf ? The death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is a historical fact, and a living hope for Christians. The faith -filled believers who gather on Easter Sunday to celebrate Christ rising from the dead have got a hope. They have the hope of eternal life after their death, and the hope now of a vital, growing relationship with a loving God, His Son, and the comfort of the Holy Spirit.
Have you got a hope ?
Perhaps it is time you asked God for a sign of His love and care for you.
I was walking along the beach after a huge rain storm had whipped up gigantic waves. My son found balls of all sorts: ping pong, soccer, baseball, tennis, and even a deflated basketball. I found something white and fuzzy, with sand drenched fur. It was a stuffed toy sheep, and it brought tears to my eyes.
Just the day before I had shared my faith story, noting how Jesus as the Good Shepherd, was really special in leading me to understand that I could have a personal relationship with Him. (John 10, NIV). The odds of finding a sheep on the beach are pretty low, and the physical gift of a sheep in the sand was a sign to me that Jesus is real, and He cares about me.
Look for hope in God’s word. Read your Bible. Experience the warmth of other caring people as you share your heart and refresh your spirit at a worship service. Pray, and listen to the thoughts that prompt you to love with hope.
I had originally called this column “Easter…who cares?” There is a lot of hoopla around the Christmas season, but Easter seems to just slip by.
Make this year different.
Focus on where you are at in your spiritual journey. Practice saying thanks to God and to your family and friends for what they mean to you. Do a computer “google” search on the word “hope”. Pick up a copy of the new paraphrase of the Bible called “The Message” and enjoy the living word in a new way.
We are not without hope. We can choose to ignore the hope that Jesus gives us or we can embrace His loving forgiveness, peace and joy.
I will continue to plant the seeds of hope along life’s journey. I have nothing to lose, because I have gained everything by my faith in the eternal hope of heaven, ” a faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time.” (Titus 1:2, 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, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you.” (1 Peter 1:3-4, NIV).
Happy Easter, Happy Spring…Jesus is my everything!
Elaine Froese is an encourager and professional coach who is about to launch her book “Planting the Seed of Hope…a celebration of prairie life.” It’s a collection of her past 10 years of Grainews columns.