Hope - The Unlikely Story
While I was attending a conference on the Glory of God, I spoke with a close spiritual friend Lydia, sharing with her the Lord had instructed us to start a Christian T-shirt Company where people would be able to wear faith based shirts as a means to share the Good News.
As we were talking, she said, “You know Marina, right?” I responded I wasn’t sure who she was. She said you have to meet her as she would be someone to know and her spirit moved to introduce us. So a few days later, I was able to speak with Marina and she loved the idea of what the Lord was having us do with the T-shirts. She asked that I be a guest on her program which is her ministry where she hosts a radio program and interviews Pastors and Christian Leaders from all over.
During the interview we talked about my walk with the Lord and my husband’s and what God has done in our lives over the past 11 years. At the time of the interview, I felt so strongly there was a greater purpose to this meeting but couldn’t really state what that was all I knew was God was doing something. What great joy there is in knowing God had aligned this relationship for something greater but not fully understanding it was a mystery I knew the Lord would reveal in time. This was my HOPE.
The interview was early 2020 and was really enjoyable. I had not actually met Marina face to face as this was all over email, social media, phone and texting. Since then, we are always reaching out when we are going to be at different conferences or events in hopes of a few moments to say hello. Just to be able to be in good company of believers who could speak into each others lives and work together was such an exciting moment that I thought well this is what God had in mind all along. Right?
Those who know God know He does everything greater and in abundance of what we could ever imagine. In November 2020, I received a message from Marina wanting to know if our church could use baby clothes for any outreach to help the community. I made arrangements to come to her house to pick up the items and she tells me over the phone she has some additional items and a bag for one person at my church. I didn’t think much of it and thought she had a bag for me to give to just anyone in the church as I know she has not visited our church, lives far away from it, and has never shared she knew anyone who attended there.
When I arrived at her house I was so joyful to get to meet her face to face. We begin to talk about everything the Lord has been doing and just “gushing” about His goodness. How faithful He is during these challenging times. It was clear looking back that our HOPE was firmly in him. We trusted in him to bring peace and joy into our hearts and this was one of those moments.
She begins to show me many boxes of new unwrapped baby onesies to be given to anyone in need and then shows me one special baby bag that was for one special person in my church. She tells me the name of the person I am to give it to and I stand in surprise and ask, “Do you know her?” She begins to tell me a beautiful testimony which you could not have even imagined.
She says, “Yes I do.” You see I was once married to her father a long time ago. I even adopted her and then the marriage did not work out and we were separated and were never able to see each other again. She continued to share that because her and I had met and done the interview and I had shared on social media that this is where the person from my church saw her. It turns out the person from my church had been looking and praying to meet up with her again someday but could not find her anywhere until I posted the interview and from the moment she saw her she knew her prayers had been answered. Here was the woman she had been looking for all these years. This was the Hope she had in her heart and prayed to God for.
There is so much more in this testimony which is hard to be expressed in words that are adequate. They have both reconnected after all these years. I was so overwhelmed by God answering these prayers and for me to know that God would use something for a greater reason was my Hope fulfilled. Even my husband said, you are going to her house to pick up these items but it is for a greater purpose.
Now I know as you read this many of you have a great #HOPE in something just as this message of #HOPE contains a complete demonstration of Healing, Restoration and New Birth just as Jesus Christ is our HOPE.
There is a Hebrew translation of the word Hope (Yachal) and it is “wait” which by definition it means that God’s promised outcome has not arrived, and that some time will pass before it does. But that time is filled with a sense of waiting on God, often with a deep ache or longing for God to act.
Websters Dictionary defines Hope in a similar way to mean a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen. A feeling of trust. To want something to happen or be the case. Hoping today is expecting something to happen like I hope it snows tomorrow or I hope I pass the exam.
This definition is based on a doubt or uncertainty but Biblical Hope is knowing for a fact that the desired outcome will happen. It is not wishful thinking but a confident expectation. This type of Hope is spoken by many in the Bible and is a beacon of light in the darkness.
Hope in the Old Testament means to wait for something with expectation and anticipation it will happen. It is often accompanied by joy and pleasure, and it is related to God.
Times of waiting may include: healing, marriage relationship - current/future, restorations, children, answer, direction, guidance, purpose, a loved one to come or return to God, financial breakthrough, promotion, freedom, justice, change, fulfillment of a dream, fulfillment of a promise, Insert your own here.
There are two ways we can look at hope.
1. Hope can be seen as optimism where we assume bad circumstances will improve with passing to time.
2. There is a HOPE which is greater established by God himself and it is where we know that God is faithful and we are convinced that He is able to bring about his good purpose.
This leads to one of the most significant concepts in our understanding of God and his relationship with his people (past, present, and future) and the structure and message of His Word. We enter into a covenant with God
To be in Covenant with God means a pact, compact or agreement.
In the book of Daniel 11:32 it tells us, “The people who know their God will be strong and take action.”
So Hope or the Covenant of Hope with God is an agreement we can enter into knowing He is able to bring about his good purpose. Hope is looking expectantly towards the future based on our faith in God in the present and His faithfulness in the past.
Faith and Hope go hand in hand. Faith is grounded in the reality of the past; hope is looking to the reality of the future. Without faith, there is no hope, and without hope, there is no true faith.
Follow God’s light and truth and He will guide you. Your Hope is in Him. God is in this Whirlwind of the times we are in. Fear not and have Hope as the Book of Hebrews tells us:
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things HOPED for, the evidence of things not seen.
We can look at the times now and see many are without #HOPE. When we are in times of injustice or other devastating life experiences Hope can be seriously threatened.
This was reflected in the book of Job. While everything came against him in the natural and it seemed as if the storm against him would never end, God was always in the storm.
In Job 38 - Job began to ask God a series of questions to which God spoke to Job by answering him with a series of questions no man would have answers to. What is interesting to note is God spoke from the whirlwind. The Lord shows up in the storm. It is here where Job falls in humble reverence before him speechless understanding God is in control. Job’s hope is in the Lord.
Where does your HOPE come from? Are you being optimistic assuming time will bring about a better situation or are you understanding God is faithful and are convinced He is able to bring about his good purpose in your life?
In the Old Testament, hope was associated with ones hopes for outcomes that may be realized in our lifetime. When we look to the New Testament it is closely associated with Christ and his saving work - Christians now live by hope in Christ. His future appearing is the “Blessed Hope” and it stimulates hopes for God’s plans to be realized in our own or other’s lives.
Hope is named as a Christian attribute. It involves the return and full revelation of Jesus Christ. The resurrection of the dead and the renewal of all Creation. Then God’s redeemed people will see his face and live in his presence forever. A vision of this future enables use to press on with HOPE, reaching toward what is to come.
We need to have HOPE as it motivates us to move forward through life’s trials. HOPE is the key that helps us navigate the waters without despair. We can have peace and joy no matter the circumstances because we know we have God who works for our good.
Hope in God - rooted in God’s covenant faithfulness.
Hope trusts God in the present.
Hope in God is a sustainable weapon against any obstacle, challenge or longing you may have.
When you start a conversation with God begin by telling Him all the things you are thankful for. This is the Key that unlocks the door of Hope. God can take our lack through your thankfulness and He will Bless, Break and multiply it. Don’t look at the challenge - Look to heaven - Thank God for everything and stand, shout and shine with HOPE in your heart.
Psalm 42:5-6 Why am I so discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again - my Savior and my God!
This scripture speaks of depression and the antidote for it is to meditate on the record of God’s goodness to his people. You will take your mind off the present situation as you focus your thoughts on God’s ability to help you rather than on your inability to help yourself. The very definition of HOPE.
God uses seasons of waiting to prepare us for what’s coming, to draw us closer to Him, and to make sure His promises are fulfilled at the proper time. All of life’s circumstances are under God’s control. Knowing that God loves and cares for us enables us to keep steady in our faith regardless of our circumstances.
When we look at the testimony of Marina and the reuniting with her step daughter it is so beautiful to see a Hope fulfilled for them. It took years of seeking and praying but God was always there for just the right moment at the right time. Remember the waiting is a time to stand in HOPE.
We read in Psalm 23:6 - Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.
The believers will dwell with the Lord. God, the perfect shepherd and host, promises to guide and protect us throughout our life and to bring us into his house forever. He is our only hope for eternal life and security.
Hope makes us Bold and many need your boldness now. Testify of the goodness of God to anyone and everyone. Watch as Hope begins to light up dark areas for others. May 2021 be a year of Hope fulfilled for many.
Isaiah 40:31 (ESV)
But they who wait (hope) for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with the wings of eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
To learn more about Marina and the interviews she hosts check out Faith City Outreach LLC on Facebook. Check out the link there: https://faithcityoutreach-nations.captivate.fm/
Faith City Outreach is a global internet radio program.