POSSESSED BY HOPE
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.Hebrews 11:1 NKJV
Hebrews 11…known to many as the “faith” chapter. It plainly tells us what faith is and then goes into a long list of those who walked in faith before. Personally, I love the Passion translation of this verse.
Now faith brings our hopes into reality and becomes the foundation needed to acquire the things we long for. It is all the evidence required to prove what is still unseen.Hebrews 11:1 TPT
Faith foundational to our relationship with the Lord. In fact later in Hebrews 11 verse 6 says:
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
It is impossible to please God without faith? Well….crap……no pressure. What is faith then? How do I get it? I so desperately want to please God. How do I get this faith that it speaks of in Hebrews 11? If FAITH is the substance of things HOPED for….then maybe we start with hope. Hope is in desperate need and short supply with in the world today…and in my particular country where there is an election going on and news that spouts off untruths and a bleak future….hope is very hard to come by. HOWEVER, I am a follower of Jesus. Maybe….just maybe….we are to get our hopes up. Maybe just maybe, as a follower of Jesus, I have a reason too hope when others don’t. Maybe, just maybe there is a long list of people who walked in faith after verse 1 because when we read it we get our hopes up. We can then say, if God did that for them…then He could do it for me.
The word used for hope in verse 1 is epizo in the greek. It is a verb that means to expect or trust for something. It requires action…..activation. DC Talk said “Love is a verb.” (I am TOTALLY dating myself)…well so is hope. Hope is a verb, and we must be intentional to have it.
Blake Schellenberg a speaker who talks of Heaven in Business is quoted saying, “He who has the most hope has the most influence.” I had never heard this quote before until I heard Bill Johnson quote him just last week at a message he gave at my church conference. He then went on to say many things about being “possessed with hope” and a “prisoner of promise.” Call me a thief, but I am stealing it….honestly, that is what this whole blog is about. Gleaning…taking hope from others who have hope filled stories and putting them in your bag of hope. Then you build up that bag of hope until you have faith.
Hope is so very important. Is there someone that you can sit with that has a great story to share about how they went through the fire and yet they kept hoping…they never walked away from the Lord…they stuck with it? Is there a person that you can sit with and ask them about the miracles the Lord released in their life? What battle are you facing? Sit with someone who faced the same giant and glean their hope. Let their hope and breakthrough be yours until it IS yours.
Have you heard “Don’t get your hopes up.” I have. Often it it me saying it to me. I say it to myself in order to protect myself from disappointment and failure. What if God WANTS me to get my hopes up? What if I chose to think of getting my hopes up as filling up my hope bag with words of hope that I gleaned from others? What if I got my hopes up that way? What if “getting our hopes up” is collecting hope? Don’t have any deep theology to prove it…it is just a image to meditate.
My prayer…Lord, may we all be POSSESSED WITH HOPE. So possessed with hope that it manifests the SUBSTANCE of Faith. Lord, give us stories of hope that we can steal and keep in our bag of hope….and keep piling it on so that we “get our hopes up”….. until their breakthrough becomes our breakthrough. Lord, you alone are our source of hope. Our hope is in you alone Jesus.
Now….go steal some stories of hope. Get your hope bag filled up. Get possessed with hope.