By Warren Olson
Hope is an interesting thing, isn’t it? While it comforts, many people I speak with are simply afraid to have it because they don’t want to be let down. Maybe they’ve hoped for so long that they would wake up one morning pain-free, yet it never happens. Or, perhaps they have hoped that God would take away their loneliness, yet they constantly find themselves feeling isolated.
I recently read about an experiment performed a number of years ago to see the effect that hope has on those undergoing hardship. For this experiment, two sets of laboratory mice were placed in separate tubs of water. The researchers left one set of mice in the water and found that within an hour, they had all drowned.
The mice in the other tub were periodically lifted out of the water and then returned. After awhile, the researchers stopped taking them out of the tub, yet they swam for over 24 hours. Why? Not because they were given a rest, but because they suddenly had hope!
You see, those mice in the second tub had seen rescue before. And they hoped that if they could simply stay afloat a little longer, someone would reach down and rescue them again. Yet those in the first tub had never known hope. And because they had never seen hope materialize in the past, they simply gave up!
As we look into God’s Word to see what our hope should really be, we’re immediately drawn to Hebrews 11:1, which says, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
Here we see that the biblical idea of hope is very closely tied to the concept of faith. As a believer, you have hope because you have God-given faith. This means that faith in God without the hope that He will come through for you is not biblical faith. Rather, true faith in God means that you also have every hope He’s going to work things out for your best!
Maybe today, you find yourself reluctant to have hope. Perhaps you’ve even seen God come through for you in miraculous ways before, yet you’re hesitant to trust in Him to take care of you today. God is faithful. He knows exactly what you need and will work everything out for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
In Jesus Christ, there’s always hope. So whether your circumstances today seem good or bad, you can always have hope because of what He’s done for you in the past and what He’s promised you for the future.