Rejoice in Hope, Endure in Affliction, and Persevere in Prayer*

Our culture has co-opted and corrupted hope.  Culturally, hope is a wish for a particular outcome or result.  Christian hope is not a wish for reality to be different.  Christian hope lies in the fulfillment of truth and reality, a desire and expectation of sufficient grace from God to attain eternal life with Him.  Christian hope is a virtue that does disappoint. We rejoice in hope, because God is always faithful to his promises.  God will provide the grace needed to attain eternal salvation.  We only need to respond to His grace.

A response to His grace is a call to take up the cross of His son, Christ Jesus, and to follow Him.  Our hope for redemption and salvation lies in the cross.  Before drinking of the cup of the Heavenly banquet, we must first drink of the cup of the cross.  We may be called to bear the cross of physical or mental pain and suffering, the cross of rejection and ridicule, or the cross of the betrayal.

Our cross need not be burdensome.  With Christ, our cross is made easy and light (Matthew 11:30).  We will find rest through our union with Him in prayer that expresses our love for Him, prayer that yokes us to His will, and prayer of hope in the promised glory of heaven.  The Psalms abound in hope: “I waited patiently for the LORD; he inclined to me and heard my cry.” (Psalm 40:1)  We must be patient and persevere in our cries to the LORD, and tenaciously seek solitude and be ever watchful and attentive to His call.

*Romans 12:12

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