HOPE is a powerful thing but hope only works when you place it in God. There is a small little phrase in the 42nd Psalm in the bible and it says to “Put your hope in God.” The writer was talking about what believers should do when troubles come. Many people wonder when things will ever get better for them. They feel hopeless and powerless, out of control of their own lives. Trouble has a way of making you feel like there is no way out and there is just no hope. But when a person hopes in God there is a far different result.
When hope is placed in God one is saying much more than they “believe in” God. They are saying they “want” God. Hope in God says we want to be in a relationship with God and that we want him to have his way in our life, believing his way will always be the best way. Whatever you hope in will prevail. Whatever you hope for will come to past in some way or another. Putting your hope in God is the right move. But how do you do that? Good question. First you have to remind yourself to always praise God and not the trouble. How do I “praise trouble” you ask?
Athletes are often inspired to play harder when their fans cheer for them.
In the NFL there are times when the hometown fans are being so loud that the offence cannot hear the quarterback calling out the plays. In tennis, I love tennis, there are those players who are almost always fan favorites. Fans cheer for their favorite tennis players and that can be quite distracting for the one having to play him or her. My point is, athletes are often inspired to play harder when their fans cheer for them. When you cheer for trouble more that you praise God guess which is going to be more prominent?
My nephew is a mixed martial arts fighter. Recently I watched him fight and when the announcer introduced him he didn’t say; “here’s Trey.” No, it was much more emphatic than that. He said something like; “A mixed martial artist standing at 5 feet 9 inches tall. He weighed in at 170 pounds and he represents ‘fearless fighting.’ Here is Justin T-Rey Harrell!” When the announcer introduced him like that it was not a sound of defeat but a sound of hope that he was going to fight really well and he did.
Some people praise their trouble by saying such things as; “things are so bad, they are never going to get better.” “This is the worst day I have ever had, it has ruined my life.” It is amazing how big and powerful and invincible we often make our trouble sound. “I’m broke and won’t be able to pay my bills this month.” “I’m sick and will never get better.” “I’ve lost him and he’s never coming back.” These sound like we have given our trouble absolute power. Don’t praise the trouble but place your hope in God and praise him. Another thing to do to benefit from the power of hope is to always remember the goodness of God instead of remembering the trouble you are in.
Often in bad times it is hard to remember the good times.
In verse 6 of Psalm 42 the writer said to God; “I am deeply depressed; therefore, I remember you…” It is funny how depression can give you dementia when it comes to remembering the good things God has done in your life. That is why it is a good thing not to forget to hope in God when you are in trouble. Of course, that isn’t ever easy. Often in bad times it is hard to remember the good times. That is why it is so easy to lose hope in the struggle. One sure way to ignite hope is to remember him.
Remember how he saved you and celebrate it.
Remember how he healed you and herald it.
Remember how he provided for you and praise him for it.
Remember how he delivered you and dance about it.
Remember how he never let you down so let everyone know!
Why? Because your testimony sounds a lot like hope.
HOPE in him and not in the trouble. In Psalm 42: 11c the writer asks; “Why are you in such turmoil? Put your hope in God for I will still praise him, my savior and my God.” It sounds like when we do not put our hope in God the end result is turmoil. Perhaps too many are in turmoil because they hoped for turmoil. But why would we ever hope for turmoil? If faith is the substance of things hoped for and you believed the worst…guess what? You must be hoping for the worst. You see, hope only works when you put your hope in God.
"When you drop a coin in the slot machine and want to hit the jackpot. That is hope and not faith. When you play a scratch-off or the lottery, praying you will hit it big, that is hope and not faith. It is only FAITH when you want what God wants." - Dr. Hughes
It is HOPE when you want what you want. As long as you want anything more than you want a relationship with God you will be in some level of turmoil. I want to remind you that there is no trouble greater than our God. As long as you believe the trouble is greater your hope will be very low but when you trust that God will give you the desires of your heart your hope will be high.
The bible says to “put your hope in God, for I will still praise him, my savior and my God.” In other words; don’t simply put your FAITH in God…put your HOPE in God as well!
"Let God be what you want most and God will give you what you want most!" - Dr. Wiley Hughes
Rev. Wiley Hughes
D.Min., Psy.D., FBPPC, LPCA, NCC
Apostolic Leader of Destiny Now