A Hopeful Perspective

February 21, 2023

A compilation

Audio length: 8:21
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My soul, wait in silence for God only,
For my hope is from Him.—Psalm 62:5

Can I suggest something that has helped me through the years and different hard circumstances?

If you are feeling powerless to change your circumstances and struggle to have a hopeful perspective, ask God to help you move from “what if” to “what is”… and from “what was” to “what now.”

 These shifts in focus are not only change agents in our heart and mind, but they are also life-altering biblical ideas.

 “What if” is a place we are often stuck in—a defeating, repeating pattern of questions without good answers that hinders our ability to move forward in life.

 “What is” becomes a focal shift to the realities at hand; the possibilities that still exist; the hope we are afforded as believers; and the promise of heaven, the ultimate, evergreen prize.

 “What was” is a place we often revert to and dwell in unnecessarily, rehashing painful things in our history, living in regret and resentment.

 “What now” becomes our powerful new perspective for each and every day, which brings a new level of positivity, hope, and peace. … [W]hat can God do with your life now? Where can you find joy? What remains that can be used for eternal purposes?—Lisa Whittle1

Brighter tomorrows

What does one do when their hopes and dreams get shattered? What should one do to move forward from disappointment to new hopes?

These were the questions I asked myself when I heard about a disappointing setback. A friend of mine and her family were going to team up with us on some of our volunteer projects. I was very much looking forward to it, but in the end, much to my dismay, it didn’t work out.

When I heard the news, a quote popped into my mind: “The future is as bright as the promises of God.” That sounded nice, but what promises? I was reminded of several Bible verses: “All things work together for good to those who love God” (Romans 8:28). “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take” (Proverbs 3:5–6). “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you” (John 14:18). “Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it’” (Isaiah 30:21).

As I started pondering each of these verses, new hope flooded my soul. My mind went from an array of dark gray tones to a bright and fully colored vivid image: this situation isn’t the end of the road, neither for me nor for them. God knows the big picture, and He has something wonderful in store for all.

True, the development was disappointing for me. But when I filtered it through God’s promises, I was able to see a completely fresh new leaf turning for my friend and her family—a page full of new and awesome possibilities. Excitement started welling up inside me and I couldn’t wait to hear of the wonderful opportunities that would open up for them.

This incident taught me that if we allow disappointment to cloud our eyes, our outlook becomes bleak, and it is difficult to see the future with faith and confidence. But if we let the rays of God’s promises shine into our minds, they create a light show that turns every shadow inside out. New hope starts forming, creating a positive blueprint for the future. Our positive, hopeful outlook enables us to see possibilities, and we can step out with confidence into brighter tomorrows.—Irena Žabičková

Jesus, our hope-giver

I am the resurrection and the life. Allow Me to take your broken dreams and replace them with new dreams. I am hope alive in you! When you feel discouraged, praise Me that I am the Hope-Giver. I am able to breathe new life into your soul. When you feel sad or depressed, look to Me as the One who brings beauty out of the ashes. Bring Me your praise even when you don’t feel like it. I am working behind the scenes to bring about My will for your life. When you worship Me, even though you are walking through trials, it makes My heart sing, and I pour out blessing on your life. I know at times it feels like I am not listening to the desires of your heart. Trust Me, My child. I am listening, and if it is best for you, I will give you what you ask. Praise Me by faith that My plans for your life are far beyond what you can imagine. Watch and see what I will do!—Jesus2

Reminding ourselves of our hope

While the challenges we face day by day may inevitably take up much of our time and attention, having hope can keep our minds and hearts focused on the Lord and our wonderful future with Him. Such hope can give us the courage and fortitude to stay positive and praiseful through the tests and trials and the ups and downs we face. When we remind ourselves of what is ahead—the assurance of our salvation and promised blessings for eternity—we can face our challenges courageously, with the sure knowledge that no matter what the outcome, we have the hope of a future with God.

Regularly reminding ourselves of our hope—our knowledge that we are saved, that God’s Spirit dwells within us, that Jesus sacrificed so that we can be in relationship with God, that He is present in our lives each day, and that we are assured of eternity with Him—should affect the way we think and feel about our life. When we live with this hope, we know that the eternal outcome will be glorious, and therefore we can better face the difficulties of life. Regularly reminding ourselves of the assurance of our salvation and what it means to our eternity can cause us to be more positive about our circumstances. We are wonderfully saved, and will spend forever in love, joy, and peace with God. As the bearers of such hope, we are called to likewise share that hope of glory with others, to do our best to represent Jesus to them, to love them as He does, and to humbly help them feel His love and care through us.

May we always consciously live with the hope we have through Christ, and share that hope with others, as Jesus shared it with us.—Peter Amsterdam

Published on Anchor February 2023. Read by Lenore Welsh. Music by John Listen.

1 https://proverbs31.org/read/devotions/full-post/2021/09/06/when-you-arent-sure-if-you-can-see-good-again.

2 Becky Harling, The 30-Day Praise Challenge (David C. Cook, 2013). For scriptures referenced in this passage, see John 11:25; Isaiah 61:1–3; James 1:12; Hebrews 13:15.

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