Hope through the Unknowns
We all want to dream of what could be. We want to be better people. We want to do more for others. We want our lives to mean something, to leave a legacy. How does that change when unknowns cloud our view of the future?
I am a very futuristic person. Thoughts, plans, and dreams of the future are what keep me motivated. My thoughts often live in five years from now.
Thinking about the future can be frustrating. I feel lost when I don’t have a plan I’m working towards, like I don’t have purpose. Yet time and again, my plans get derailed. Things become foggy and discouraging. Then I begin to question and doubt.
Hope is a confident expectation. It is believing that God has something good for your future. He said to Jeremiah and the Israelites that He “plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).
Jeremiah received this message in a time of complete disarray. The nation had been exiled as slaves to a foreign country. The remnants were under siege and tight surveillance. The temple and city of Jerusalem were demolished. Famine was increasing. People were desperate. How could they hold onto hope and a future when all they saw was destruction?
“But I will look to the Lord;
I will wait for the God of my salvation.
My God will hear me.” – Micah 7:7
Even though the Israelites world looked grim, God’s hope never faded away. They knew what they needed to do. Yahweh was waiting for His people to look to Him, to cry out, and turn back in repentance to their true King. They knew that their dependence needed to be on Him, not their government, family, or themselves. Their independence is what got them in trouble in the first place.
God always goes before us with what we need so that our hope can be confidently assured in Him. He sent Isaiah to prophesy to the people before the exodus happened. Isaiah came with a warning, but also a message of hope. This was so that when they came to this point in time, they would have the truth they needed to carry them through. They would have the hope of a Shepherd, a “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, [and] Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6). They could hold onto hope that a Saviour would come to rescue them.
As much as I have been grounded in faith these last few weeks, I found that my eyes were starting to drift to the circumstances rather than keeping them fully on Jesus. I was losing sleep, having awful and frustrating dreams. My soul was restless within me.
Then the Holy Spirit nudged my heart. He made me aware of where my focus was fading to. It was starting to worry about all the unknowns. I was trying to take control and independently plan my own deliverance rather than keeping my faith and hope where it belonged.
I am a person that likes structure. I like to know what’s happening in my world. If I know, I can be passionately set on a one-track mission. If unknowns cloud that view, I start to worry and lose focus.
Thankfully, I was able to take some time on Saturday to “Be Still” (Psalm 46:10). I was able to stop the fighting within me. I took time to genuinely worship the Lord. I sat in the quietness of my home and laid out my concerns before my Father. In return, I felt His love and assurance. I felt His hope.
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13
Though we cannot see what our future looks like right now, we can hope in the Lord that He knows the way. His way is good and true. His way is unchangeable. What He set out for you to do will still be done.
As we head into the Easter holiday, may we take time each day to quiet our hearts and be still before the Lord. May we truly listen to what He has to say to us. May we lay our burdens down and hope in the confident expectation that He is going to do something great. In turn, may we be filled with “all joy and peace as we believe in Him”.
Hope in Him,