THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK

Hope has tremendous power to sustain and strengthen us, especially in the most difficult of times. But when our hope is not realised, or when we discover that we have placed our hope in the wrong things, it can be devastating. This is why the Bible calls hope one of the big three characteristics of those who follow Jesus, but it also teaches that we must be careful where we place our hope.

If our hope is in other human beings, or in social and political structures, or in our bank accounts, we will usually be disappointed. These things are not necessarily bad, but they are incapable of sustaining true hope because they do not last and they are fickle. What we need is an object of hope that can remain firm and that can strengthen us even if we know that we may not see our hope fulfilled. When our hope is in something so compelling, so true and good and beautiful, so obviously worthy, our lives find a source of meaning and strength that can carry us for a lifetime. This is because we know that every small step toward that hope is significant, even the full realisation of our hope may only be seen in future generations. This is what God’s Reign is like. It offers a vision of a world that is healed and just, and while we may not experience such a world in our lifetimes, it is worth giving our lives to help humanity make a few small steps toward it.

This week we explore the power of hope, and the vision of God which is the only thing that is truly worthy of our hope.

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