Insightful words from Paul Tripp in his “New Morning Mercies” book. God, through the events that brought suffering, seems to be teaching me from many different angles the same lessons over and over. He is strengthening me with words like this…from Tripp:
“Where is hope to be found? In five life-altering words: “I am with you always.”
Tripp goes on to say…
“You and I are on a constant quest for hope. We all want a reason to get up in the morning and motivation to continue. Here are some things you have to know about hope:
(1) God hardwired human beings for hope. We don’t live by instinct; we all find our identity, meaning, purpose, and inner sense of well-being in something.
(2) What you place your hope in will set the direction of your life. Whether you know it or not, your life path is directed by hope. Whether it’s hope in a philosophy, a person, a dream, a location, or whatever, your life will be shaped by what you place your hope in.
(3) Hope always includes an expectation and an object. I am hoping for something and hoping that someone or something will deliver it.
(4) Hope, to be hope, has to fix what is broken. Hope that does not address your needs isn’t very hopeful. You place your hope in your mechanic only if he has the ability to fix what’s broken on your car.
(5) You always preach to yourself a gospel of some kind of hope. You’re always reaching for hope and preaching to yourself the validity of what you reach for.
But here is the radical truth of the gospel. Hope is not a situation. Hope is not a location. Hope is not a possession. Hope is not an experience. Hope is more than an insight or a truism. Hope is a person, and his name is Jesus!
He comes to you and makes a commitment of hope: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:20).
Now, there’s hope. You have something profoundly deeper to hold on to than the hope that people will be nice to you, that your job will work out, that you will make good choices when tempted, that you’ll be smart enough to make good decisions, that you’ll be able to avoid poverty or sickness, or that you’ll have a good place to live and enough to eat. No, this is eternal and deeply personal hope. It rests in the truth that Jesus has wrapped his powerful arms around you and he will never, ever let you go.
If nothing you envisioned ever works out and all the bad things that you’ve dreaded come your way, you still have hope, because he is with you in power and grace.”