I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for the LORD. Psalm 27: 13-14
Hope. It is such a powerful thing. Without hope, people dry up and die. But with hope, people flourish, even in the worst of circumstances.
The students at P.S. 121 Elementary School in East Harlem were kids without much hope. Their home lives were difficult at best, and the statistics showed that 75% of them would never even finish high school.
In 1981, millionaire Eugene Land went to that school, his alma mater 50 years previous, to speak to the 6th grade class. His prepared speech was a challenge to the kids to work hard and get an education, but he sensed that challenge would merely be empty words to those who had no hope. So at the last minute, he changed his speech and told the 59 youngsters in the class, “Stay in school … and I’ll help pay the college tuition for every one of you.”
At that moment, hope was born in their hearts. One student said, “I had something to look forward to, something waiting for me. It was a golden feeling.” Nearly 90 percent of that class went on to graduate from high school. Roughly 60% of them graduated from college. Wow!
What made the difference? Hope!
THE GOD OF HOPE
In the Bible, God is called, “The God of hope” (Romans 15:13). No matter how bleak and black the circumstances, He can turn it all around in an instant and give beauty for ashes. King David knew this to be true; and used that truth to conquer the stifling feelings of depression and despair.
Are you struggling today? Are the problems of life sinking your ship? Is the candle of hope beginning to dim against the dark backdrop of your current reality? Are you losing hope for a spiritual breakthrough, a better marriage, a fulfilling job, a happy family, or a brighter tomorrow?
Get your eyes off your problems and put them on the God of hope. The goodness of the LORD is right around the corner for you. Don’t throw in the towel because your deliverance hasn’t yet arrived. Wait on Him with confident expectation (the meaning of the word hope). He is never late and never in a hurry. He is always right on time, and He has a miracle with your name on it.
So hope in Him!
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Jeff Schreve is Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church in Texarkana, Texas. He and his wife Debbie have been married for over 20 years and are blessed with three wonderful girls. Jeff began From His Heart Ministries, a radio and television ministry, in January of 2005. This ministry is completely listener/viewer supported. It continues only through the faithful and generous gifts of people like you. Pastor Jeff takes no salary from this ministry. All gifts go to further the broadcast.