This world is so hard, isn’t it? Between world events of war and airplane crashes and hate crimes, tragedy seems to be all around us. And that’s just in remote places happening to people we don’t know. There is often tragedy in our own lives too. Circumstances that others bring on us, or perhaps things we do to ourselves that put us in a place we can’t seem to get out of. Between our jobs and our relationships and trying to keep afloat financially or emotionally, it can all feel like too much sometimes.
Do you ever see those people around you, maybe you know them, maybe you don’t, and they make it look so easy? It’s easy to compare ourselves to others and think that no one understands what you’re going through. It’s tempting to think that no one knows the darkness you know, no one feels the depth of your pain. Sure, the people around you may not have perfect lives, but theirs seem like a dream compared to what you’ve endured.
Maybe that’s true. Maybe others don’t know your life or what you’ve suffered. Maybe they don’t know how you feel inside about the trials you’ve seen. But one person does. One person has suffered every bit as much as you have and probably more. One person has seen and felt your pain, as well as his own, and can identify with all that you’ve gone through. His name is Jesus.
I know that sounds like a cheesy church line, but hear me out. Jesus was seated at the right hand of God, he was a co-creator of the earth and everything in it, he ruled over all. He voluntarily gave up his kingship to come wrap himself in human flesh. And he didn’t come as a wealthy king or ruler or businessman. He was born to poor parents and stayed poor his entire life. He had little in the way of comfort. Once he started his ministry, he constantly served others. He gave and gave and gave some more through teaching, loving, healing, and investing in others. His followers and closest friends rarely understood him and after he had spent three years pouring himself out to those around him, he was repaid by being hung on a cross and dying a terrible, painful death. He was abandoned by those who said they loved him, he was betrayed by a dear friend who he had invested years of his life into. The very people who were praising his name a week earlier were calling for his execution at the top of their lungs. Even his own Father in heaven had to turn his face from him because of the sin he took on for us. It was unjust and unfair because he hadn’t even done anything to deserve it.
I say this to help you know that Jesus has been through it. He has dealt with what you’ve dealt with in some form and he’s there now to help you know that he’s still going through it with you. He is our only reason to hope. Hebrews 6 reminds us that “we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls.” Jesus is our strong and trustworthy anchor when we feel tossed by the storms of life and circumstance. He is our hope when we feel like everything around us is hopeless, when we feel stuck, when we feel unloved.
He didn’t come and endure pain and death for nothing. He came and suffered so that we can know everlasting love and hope. He was temporarily separated from his God and Father so that we don’t have to be. Through a faith in Jesus, we can experience the same relationship to God that Jesus has and we can experience the benefit of the power of the relationship that got Jesus through his time here on earth. We are promised those very same things because God is our Creator and Father and because Jesus took our sin for us.
The journals you were given have two verses about hope on them. Our desire is that these will lead you to seek out hope in the only place it can truly come from: Jesus. If you have questions about what giving your life to the One who gives hope looks like, please contact us! We would love to meet with you, pray for you, and encourage you in your spiritual journey. There are lots of other passages about hope in the Bible as well. If you don’t own one, you can find many translations online.
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.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.