21 We had hoped he was the Messiah who had come to rescue Israel.
Luke 24:21 [NLT]
HOPE is a powerful word! Hope can be defined as anticipated expectation. It is powerfully emotional and a psychological stabilizer. In crisis situations hope serves as our ballast. We know that hope does anticipate a positive outcome when we feel victimized by circumstances beyond our control.
However, despair can violate our human factors. It can leave us with a sense of dread and helplessness. This is what happened to the disciples following the death of Christ. They lost hope. They were discouraged, fearful, doubtful and hopeless. They had put their trust in Jesus and Jesus had died on the cross. Hope died that day in their hearts.
These two followers of Jesus were confused and bewildered by the trauma of the last few days. Jesus had entered Jerusalem as a King only to die in shame on a Roman cross. Jesus was declared to be a condemned criminal. His opponents appeared to have won the Messianic debate by silencing Him in death. Where was Hope that day? Have you ever experienced a Golgotha in your life? Have you experienced the death of a loved one? Have you dealt with the rebellion of your child or their rejection of faith? If this or other sorrowful events have occurred, then you know what hopelessness feels like.
However, hopelessness is not a word or a feeling to succumb to. Christ is in the Resurrection business. Every year we celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. The resurrection over death and all attended forces of darkness. Yet the resurrection experience is not annual but daily, hourly, minute by minute and second by second. It is found in the knowledge that HOPE is a GIFT from GOD through the RESURRECTION! Jesus arose! Jesus revealed His victorious power over evil! Jesus insured salvation and eternal life! Saint Paul said it this way: 19 And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world. 20 But in fact, Christ has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died. 1 Corinthians 15:19-20 [NLT]
Thank God we have an eternal HOPE! A HOPE that gives us strength at the funeral of our loved ones! A HOPE that gives us stability and resolution! A HOPE that life is not just temporal but eternal! A confident assurance that all is well when life is not! A witness to our spirit that the best is not yet, but yet to be! This is the message of the empty tomb! That is the impact of the Resurrection! …Why seek ye the living among the dead? 6 He is not here, but is risen:… Luke 24:5b-6a [KJV]
Christ lives! Christ the Promise! Christ the Redeemer! Christ the Savior! Christ the Conquer! Christ the HOPE of all who seek HIM! Live Hope daily; anticipate eternity; Rejoice in HOPE until HOPE reveals Eternity!
IN LOVE 2018!!!