The beginning of a new year is usually a time of renewed hope as we move forward into new chapters and fresh beginnings. It’s usually a time of resolutions and big plans for the months ahead.
But, not after a year like 2020. Loss, big and small, was the theme of last year. And, it’s hard to feel hopeful for the next chapter when we are still living in the painful realities of the last one.
I know you’re probably running on empty like me. I know you’re fatigued down to your very soul and desperately searching for something to hold onto. And moving forward, where we place our hope is more important than ever.
Misplaced hope can take an aching soul and break it down even more.
When we put our hope in the wrong things, it shatters under our expectations and does not hold up under the weight of our burdens and hurts.
When we place our hope in ourselves, we grow weary and frustrated as we come to the end of our strength with so much of the race left to run. When we place our hope in money, we grow anxious and panicked, knowing that it takes so long to save up but can be gone in an instant. Every worldly source of hope is finite and fragile: it is not up for the task of sustaining us.
Misplaced hope is the source of heartache. But the good news is, we have a source of hope that will never disappoint: Jesus. He is every fulfilled promise (2 Corinthians 1:20). He is the fulfillment of every ache, every question, and every prophecy. Jesus is complete, and we are invited to be whole through him.
We can be filled with the Lord’s hope, love, grace, and mercy anew every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). It is a hope that never fades and never disappoints. This hope holds up under the strain of a broken world because it’s secured in the hands of our God.
When we remember Jesus fulfills, we remember his trustworthiness and his track record of faithfulness in our lives and in the lives of believers past and present.
He fills our hearts with gospel hope and grace to see us through each day. He fulfilled his promise to reconcile us to God on the cross and continues to fulfill every longing of our hearts through a deep relationship with him.
It’s a hope available to everyone. A hope that does not diminish with a change in season or circumstance. A hope that remains steady despite uncertainty and hardship. A hope that does not depend on your social status, job status, or relationship status. A hope that is wholly available, reliable, and palpable in the life of every believer.
It is the kind of hope that allows us to tap into the strength of the Holy Spirit to get us through another day. It is the kind of hope that gives us room to hold grief and gratitude at the same time and find comfort in the midst of it all. It is the kind of hope that allows us to courageously move into a new season with a deep trust in God’s provision and plan.
In a season where so many of us are running on empty, we can seek the fullness of Christ’s hope and faithfulness to see us through. Let’s hold tightly to the only source of hope that fills and fulfills us in every way.
And let’s resolve to overflow the hope we have into each new day as we seek its new mercies each morning.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.