A moment for reflection:
by Morag Cameron
Romans 5:5 Hope does not disappoint
In conversations we use the word “hope” frequently. At the weekend when I remarked it was colder one of my grandchildren immediately piped up with the remark, “I hope it snows today.” We also use hope in other situations e.g., “I hope you have a happy birthday” or, “I hope your interview goes well.”
We can also answer difficult questions about the future from young children with answers such as, “I hope so” or “I hope not.”
We are not in control of the outcome therefore we hope events will turn out the way we, or others, want them to. We hope because we cannot be sure and we cannot change what will happen.
We especially remember God fulfilling His promise to send the Messiah, His promised rescuer, into the world to redeem us.
So many times we question if God is in control and all powerful why then do His followers face hardship, difficulty and suffering. Surely it would be better for us not to go through these circumstances. In Romans 5:3 we are reminded, “Not only this, but we also rejoice in sufferings.”
Again we question how can we, as Christians, rejoice in suffering. Romans chapter 5 states through our suffering endurance, character and hope are produced in us. As we rely on God we receive the love poured out on us through the Holy Spirit. We reflect Jesus to this fallen world of sin and suffering pointing others to Him.
Jesus warned His disciples that they would also suffer: “If the world hates you, be aware that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, the world would love you as its own. However, because you do not belong to the world, but I chose
you out of the world, for this reason the world hates you. Remember what I told you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you” John 18.15-21
However, when we read the word “hope” in the Bible, it isn’t wishful thinking things will turn out okay. When our hope is in God we can rejoice because we can be sure what God has said will happen, will happen.
The first two verses of Romans 5 state because of Christ, we are declared righteous, have peace with God, and access to grace. We rejoice in the hope of God’s glory. Our hope is sure and steadfast because of who our hope is in. Our hope is in the One who made all things, is in control, is powerful and able to do miraculous things, who knows us, seeks our good, and keeps His promises.
Throughout the Bible, God keeps His promises.
The missionary Dr. Helen Roseveare suffered greatly for being a follower of Jesus. In her final book, Count It All Joy, she wrote, “As I trust Him and seek to live in Him and for Him, then I can assuredly know that nothing will be allowed to touch my life by accident or coincidence. God is in control, and in fulfilment of His will – on a larger canvas than I can see – everything big or little that comes into my life is part of His purpose. That is utterly amazing. He offers me the privilege of being part of His purpose, part of His plan, moment by moment. So I can think of everything that comes as a privilege! Whether it seems hurtful or joyful, whether I think I can see a point in it or not, ALL is privilege. The next step, if that is so, is that I can say – and truly mean – that in everything I can rejoice: counting it all joy, even in trials and tribulations.”
In a way we don’t fully understand and would not choose, we are blessed when we are chosen by God and entrusted by Him with trials. These trials develop our endurance, character, and hope in the Lord, as we bring glory to Him!
If we experienced hardship or difficult days remember He will uphold you as you rely on Him. Remember God’s faithfulness to us over all the years we have known Him. We can go on filled with hope, knowing He will remain faithful throughout our days here and into eternity.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in him, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15.13
Lord, thank You for all the promises You have given us and help us to hear Your voice when we face difficult days and lack hope. Fill us up with hope and give us a tangible reminder that hope is an unbreakable spiritual lifeline. Lord we know You can do more than we ever can imagine. You alone are our hope.