As I jump into my car every morning to head to work, I turn on the radio to catch the most recent news headlines. I used to think this was a good way to start the day. Now, I’m not so sure. Yes, it’s important to keep up-to-date on current events, but it seems to me that the only “news-worthy” stories we hear are all very depressing. In fact, if one were to go simply by the news coverage, you would think there was almost no reason to have any hope in this world.
However, no matter how much we blast politically-fueled, argumentative stories, there are still reason to have hope in this world. You may come up with a different list than I have, but I would like to share 4 reason to remain hopeful despite the tumultuous world we live in.
1) You Are Alive
I think one of the most obvious and yet disregarded reasons to remain hopeful in this world is the plain fact you are still alive. Life is a precious gift from God and everyday should be treated as such. Every morning is another opportunity to move forward, try something new, or work on making a change. I don’t mean to get all “motivational speaker” on you, but it’s true. I’m not saying that every day of your life is going to be good; I’m saying that being alive itself is the good thing.
We all recognize that as we get older, time seems to move more quickly. One minute you were 18 years old, full of dreams and passion, the next you’re a grumpy old man wishing everyone around you would just be quieter. “Where did the time go?”, you may think to yourself. Yet, if you still have breath in your lungs and blood in your veins, you have life. Don’t simply sit back and reminisce about the “good ol’ days”, live your life today.
2) Jesus Is King
It matters whose in office, right? Well, the primary offices I care about are Prophet, Priest, and King. Only one person fills these offices, Jesus. One of the main reasons we feel hopeless is because we look at the political sphere and we are all baffled. We scratch our heads wondering how we got to this point.
“Will things ever get better?” The answer is yes. Things will get better, not because your politician of choice sits in office, but because Christ is the ultimate ruler of all. Finding hope then, is a matter of remembering the big picture of the Bible: God creates, sin destroys, Christ redeems, and finally, His kingdom comes in its fullness. My hope then, is not for current political satisfaction (although I do pray for movement in the right direction), but is in Christ as King.
3) He Brings Blessing To All
All people can enjoy life and be hopeful for the days to come because of the blessings of God. God liberally bestows so much goodness in the lives of all people, not just Christians. “For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” (Matthew 5:45) Therefore, if you are not a follower of Jesus Christ, you still receive the benefits of living in God’s world.
An individual living in a foreign country for a time may not belong, but they often receive the benefits of citizens while they remain. Similarly, living a God’s world brings many blessings. “Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights.” (James 1:16-17)
4) Salvation Is Freely Offered
At the same time, we must recognize that God’s goodness and blessings to all people have a very important purpose: namely, in order that people would turn to Him in faith. “Do you presume on the riches of His kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4) When we see how gracious God is to us, our response should be to trust Him, love Him, and to serve Him. We can be hopeful in this world when we see that His gift of salvation, of eternal life, is offered to all without distinction.
The call of the Gospel is to go forth to people from “every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages.” (Revelation 7:9) Christ’s command is to “make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:19) Not only different backgrounds, but people with various proclivities to particular sins can come to Jesus for salvation. Sometimes religious people think that particular sins are beyond redemption. However, God’s word says otherwise. “Consequently, He is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through [Christ].” There is no one who is so far off in their sin that cannot be forgiven. Hope is truly found when we come to understand our need of Jesus.
I likely will continue to listen to the news. Yet, rather than allowing the news of this world to dictate whether or not I have hope, I will turn to what God has said in His word. I will be hopefully in who He is and what He has done. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” (Romans 15:13)
By Pastor Nick Jones
Maranatha Baptist Church
1320 E. Saguaro Dr. Globe, AZ