faith

What You Should Do When You Need Hope

You don’t realize how much you need hope until yours is gone.

It’s like air in our lungs. We can’t live without it.

Google’s [archaic] definition of hope is “a feeling of trust.”

It’s true isn’t it? Hope is more than a feeling of expectation. It involves belief, faith . . . trust.

Emily Dickinson wrote:

Hope is the thing with feathers That perches in the soul, And sings the tune without the words, And never stops at all, And sweetest in the gale is heard; And sore must be the storm That could abash the little bird That kept so many warm.

Hope keeps us alive. 

Though Christmas is a celebration of hope, many of us fight the storms of life that abash hope’s voice. Everything seems magnified. Loss feels greater, deeper, more threatening than ever. The days are shorter giving the darkness more time to linger. And the cold winds portray the chill in our hearts.

We need hope.

Here’s a secret: Hope is found by those who want to find it.

I believe when we choose to find hope, we will find it, much like the shepherds who found the baby Jesus in a field. A willing, humble heart will always be led to incarnate grace. It’s not always in the logical places or where we want it to be. Hope tucks itself away to be found by treasure seekers who want more than what this world can offer.

Hope tucks itself away to be found by treasure seekers who want more than what this world can offer. Click To Tweet

Somebody needs to hear this:

“Beloved, God’s promises can never fail to be accomplished, and those who patiently wait can never be disappointed, for believing faith leads to realization. Abraham’s life condemns a spirit of hastiness, admonishes those who complain, commends those who are patient, and encourages quiet submission to God’s will and way.” Streams in the Desert

Hope requires waiting. (Hopefully not as long as Abraham and Sarah had to wait!)

But that doesn’t mean we sit around with our chins in our hands. There are things we can do to awaken the sleeping songbird and keep it singing through the fiercest storms, darkest night and loneliest season.

What you should do when you need hope

  • Worship in your kitchen, out on a sunset kissed walk, or in your car with the radio blaring. (Even when you don’t feel like it.)
  • Fellowship with other believers. Go to church. Join  a small group. Visit our Bite of Bread daily broadcasts. 
  • Pray. Talk to God and listen for His response. Journal your sadness.
  • Dig deep into the Word of Hope with the Bite of Bread reading plan. Make one of these verses yours for this season. Memorize it. Yes, you can do it!

 

Sneak Peek of the Printable with Questions

 

Psalm 33:18: But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love.

  • The word “love” is Chesed which is the merciful, gracious loving acts of kindness of God. The eyes of the Lord are watching to help those who worship Him, who recognize that He is God and they are not. Write a prayer thanking Him for His chesed or a prayer asking to help you trust in His help.

Psalm 42:5: Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

  • Our emotions are deceitful. As Peter sunk in the waves, so we sink when our eyes are on our troubles and not on Jesus. Grab His hand. Worship Him today.

Psalm 62:5-6: Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.

  • Where does the psalmist find his hope? What does this mean to you?

Isaiah 40:31: Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

  • Underline the word “renew”. It’s normal to become tired and weary. Schedule a day to rest and spend time with God all by yourself.

1 Thessalonians 5:8: But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.

  • “Hope of salvation” is to be worn as a helmet. The enemy’s greatest tactics are waged in our minds. He wants us to doubt our salvation. Renew your mind with truth.

Hebrews 10:23: Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

  • Circle the verbs (our part). When is the last time you told someone about your hope? Did it strengthen you?

1 Timothy 6:17: Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.

  • What do you worry about? Identifying our worries proves where we put our hope. Can we give those worries to God trusting His provision and wisdom?

Click here to download or print the scriptures and prompts printable. 

Remember:

Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. -Isaiah 40:31

Hope in the Lord gives us wings. It is that songbird that beckons us to fly above the disappointments of today knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has good things planned, plans of hope and a future, plans of shalom, peace and wholeness (Jeremiah 29:11).

The sun will come up tomorrow. You might need to bundle up and go watch it. 

And then come back, pour yourself a cup of coffee, and join us at 8:20 AM ET for some breakfast for your soul. Just follow me on Facebook. 

I feel a prayer comin’ on. Grab my hands.

“Dear Lord, oh Papa, so many people have lost their hope. Some are just barely holding on. Grief weighs them down and the darkness seems to be winning. Strengthen them. May your Word come to life this week and speak hope and life in the hopeless crevices of their souls. Thank you for coming to this world. Thank you Jesus. You are our hope. Amen.”

 

digging deep,

 

andy

 

PS. If this was encouraging, and you don’t want to miss any Bite of Bread reading plans and posts, subscribe today! You’ll receive a 22-Day Devotion on Psalm 119 called Finding the Beauty {Full} in God’s Word.Just click here to dig deep to live fully. 🙂 

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2 thoughts on “What You Should Do When You Need Hope

  1. I’m catching up on my reading today and your Bite of Bread is meat to my weary bones and fickle heart <3 As I read "Hope tucks itself away to be found by treasure seekers who want more than what this world can offer" I began to list my hopes for yesterday and recognized God's faithfulness. Next, I began to list my hopes for the next week–work, Christmas, and my birthday. Reasonable hopes…"our emotions are deceitful". Very deliberately, I set aside hopes for relationships with people and circumstances that no longer exist. Finally, I smile when I read "Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall…" (So, it's not just me and this aging thing) and praise God b/c HE IS FAITHFUL. Merry Christmas sweet Andy!

    1. Hey Debbie, thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. I’m thankful this word was meat to your weary bone. Yes, we all get weary. It’s okay. But when our hope is in him, we get wings. Praying for your wings and rest. Blessings!

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