Thank you for all you who joined our Live Chat last night within Waiting in Hope Chats (facebook private group and a online community of others in this journey) we discussed hope, how to hope, what keeps us from hoping, what God is asking of us etc... Please take this time to process more of what God is revealing to you, He is speaking do you hear? Are you and will you listen?
(Print this out… get your pen, journal, bible and really use this as your time with the GREAT I AM who IS PRESENT and ABLE!)
One of the biggest things that the Lord has been teaching me about hope is this - my hope is not dependent on receiving the thing I hope for.
To really understand what this means, we first need to look at the root meaning of “hope.” The Hebrew word for hope is “yachal.” This means to wait, to be patient, cause to be pained, to tarry, trust, stay.
The meaning of hope that stood out to me was “to cause to be pained.” Wow, so the original word for this kind of hope actually implies that it may be painful. I always thought of hope only as happy feelings and dreaming about the future, but it does hurt to hope sometimes doesn’t it?
Usually when you are hoping it is because you want to be somewhere that you aren’t currently or you want something that you don’t have. Therefore, hoping is usually linked to our expectations. If you read through the Psalms about hope you will find several instances where the Psalmist is in despair, and that despair is what leads him to hope. There is a hope that means expectation but the kind of hope we are talking about today focuses more on what we do during the waiting. Sometimes our circumstances do not match our desires (expectations) and that leads to suffering. But how are you going to respond?
Read Psalm 130 and circle every time you read “hope.”
- What is the context of each time hope is used?
- Does your bible have a title above this Psalm? What is it?
- How do you think these people felt on a pilgrimage?
Think about a sentry. These were the guards of the city that were in charge of protecting the people from thieves, animals and any other danger that may come - especially during the night. There were 2 that would share a 24 hour shift - one watched for 12 hours while the other slept and vice versa. They had to ALWAYS be on without any breaks. The whole city was at stake! So describe how they probably felt as morning approached...
Verse 7 hinges on hope - “Let Israel hope in the LORD for with the LORD there is mercy and with him is plenteous redemption.” Israel actually means to prevail with power by the mighty strength of God. I love how verse 7 uses Israel’s name. It’s reminding them they can only prevail with power through waiting on the Lord. And this verse uses the covenant name of the Lord - Yahovah which reminds me that God keeps his promises. Finally this verse promises plenteous redemption… which means increasing redemption.
God is promising that when you wait on him, even though it’s painful, he will restore you in greater and greater ways. Just like he put the pieces of my heart back together so much faster when I hoped! He truly does bind up the brokenhearted.
Read the following psalms: (1) write what the Psalmist’s situation was when he wrote the Psalm. (2) Then read the verse about hope - what does this teach you about our definition of hope?
- So how can we hope despite our circumstances?
Let’s look again at the Psalms to see where they found their hope. Read the following verses and write where it says their hope is found:
I think that is the perfect set of verses to end on. I hope you will even put Lamentations 3: 23-24 on your mirror this week.
Did you notice that just before these beautiful, hopeful verses the writer was heartbroken over his suffering, his loss, his bitterness. Even in verse 18 he says how everything he hoped for is lost! I know within infertility we can feel like our hopes and dreams are lost with each negative test or even when we lose that precious life. BUT despite those circumstances the writer says he will choose to “yachal” in God. He will wait even in the pain caused by his suffering WITH God. He will remember God’s MERCIES each morning, not only his losses, and he will proclaim with his mouth God’s FAITHFULNESS. Let’s remember those things today because the more we see God during this time of waiting, the more HOPEFUL we will truly be. This is what waiting in hope is all about.