No amount of hope will bring back the victims of 9/11. Families and friends of those who were lost have endured the catastrophe for 13 years now. Some have found peace.
Terrible events often cause us to lose hope.
Psalm 77 speaks about mourning and remembering. In the beginning, the writer describes crying out to God all night without relief. He tells how his eyes won’t close and his spirit is overwhelmed. When he remembers his troubles, he groans in speechless noise. However, his experience with “lost hope” does not end here. Exactly half way through the Psalm in verse 10 there is the word “but.” The writer shifts his focus and recalls all that God has done for him in the past.
As I read from this ancient account on the anniversary of current troubles, my faith is lifted.
Psalm 77: 11-14
I will earnestly recall the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will earnestly remember the wonders You performed for our fathers of old. I will meditate also upon all Your works and consider all Your mighty deeds. Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary (in holiness, away from sin and guilt). Who is a great God like our God? You are the God Who does wonders; You have demonstrated Your power among the peoples.
Christians have access to true hope. They can substitute the fragility of hoping “FOR something” and replace it with hoping “IN something.” They can place their hope IN God. This isn’t because they know the details of how, where, when, or what will happen to them, but because they know AND TRUST God will work His best plan for their life.
God’s best plan for me includes reshaping good from the bad things that happen to me.
This idea of God turning “bad” into “good” is not simply a matter of ignoring that something is “bad” or renaming the “bad” event as a “good” event. God never mistakes evil for good, but He promises His children that He will turn ALL events for their good.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
This transformation process of God re-shaping the “bad” in my life for my “good” is hard to understand.
Maybe that is why Jesus mentioned that those who come to God as “little children” are the bricks and mortar of the kingdom of heaven. A child simply trusts. A child is weak and has no control over life. Strangely, in God’s world, He seems eager to have adults grow into being a child again. Maybe God’s enthusiasm for having “CHILDREN of the faith” is spurred on because adults often hang on to the false belief that THEY have control over life. Adults believe if THEY work hard enough, smart enough, and have the right connection, then THEY can rule their life and cause good to happen to them. They believe they can be God.
Believing you can BE God is a big “no no” in God’s eyes, and this attitude is certain to bring a vivid response from Him.
Instead of trying to be God, I must be His child. I must TRUST Him. No matter what hope I have lost, I ask God for His peace. I know He freely gives this.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the PEACE of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
…that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is……
Christ in you, the HOPE of glory.
I think I just re-discovered HOPE, too!