The Right Direction For Hope
“Don’t get your hopes up.”
I’ve heard the warning, felt the pessimism creep into the cracks. There’s a good chance you have, at one point or another, heard it too. For all I know, you might be hearing it now, bouncing off your hopeful heart. “Don’t lean in too much to what you hope for because, well…it just might not happen. And who wants to be disappointed anyway, right?”
Hmmm…but wait just a cotton-pickin-minute! (insert back-country drawl)
What if “up” is where our hopes actually belong?
What if believing and reaching, seeking and searching, actually have an origin that is destined for heights that have always been beyond ourselves?
Perhaps we hope because we know that this world is not our home.
Perhaps we hope because we know that we serve a God who is as faithful as He is just.
Perhaps we hope because we recognize that if He is behind us and before us and for us, who can really be against us?
“Don’t get your hopes up” doesn’t intimidate me because my hopes have nowhere else to go.
He is not just good, He is working all things together for good. (Romans 8:28)
He is not just faithful in some things, He is faithful in all things. (Psalm 146:6)
He is not just sovereign over all, He is sovereign over that which I hold most dear. (Psalm 121)
He is not just holding me in the palm of His mighty hand, but He engraved me into it. (Isaiah 49:16)
He exchanges ashes for beauty, mourning for dancing, weeping for rejoicing, filthy for clean, broken for whole, lost for found, despair for…hope. (Isaiah 61:3, Matthew 11:5)
So, with all that is True, shouldn’t we get our hopes up?
Up out of the muck and the mire, up out of despair, up out of the it’s-never-gonna-get-any-better pessimism that darkens our vision as well as our hearts?
Listen. I am preaching to myself here. I get it. Life is hard. But today, in the midst of my pity party, fist shaking, pessimistic feeling like a dark-cloud-over-me wallowing, I felt the Truths of who He is wash over all the “what isn’ts.”
The contrast was startling, really.
And I started to laugh.
I laughed out loud at the absurdity of the comparison, cause there really is no comparison. Yes, there are parts of my life that just stink right now (trust me). And yes, there is an acute reality to the hard that is super in my face at the moment. But still, not one iota of all of that yuck holds up to the power and strength of my Redeeming Father and the goodness that He has declared for me. None of it removes the Truth of what I own. Nope.
I own hope.
It belongs to me. It was a gift that I didn’t deserve, but it can never be taken from me. So, like my face – which was made to look forward and up, by the way – hope should be lifted “up.” Yes. Yes! The rightful direction for hope is…UP!
Hope, like my face, should get up outta that muck and mire and set itself firmly upon the Truths that anchor it beyond any circumstance or trial.
This blog post, like many, was inspired by the song, “Get Your Hopes Up,” from Joshua Baldwin and Bethel Music. I needed the reminder today. Perhaps you do, too.
“Get your hopes up, lift your head up…let your faith arise
Get your hopes up, our God is for us…He’s brought us back to life
Christ before me, Christ behind me…I am firmly held!”
Chorus & Bridge from “Get Your Hopes Up”
by Josh Baldwin and Bethel Music
With joy for the journey,