Easter was a week ago. For Christians, Easter is every day. It’s the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection and God’s gift of grace and redemption. We are promised eternal life if we believe in Jesus’ death and resurrection. His death paid the penalty for our disobedience (a.k.a. sin) and now we don’t have to pay that penalty. We are filled with hope and His Holy Spirit. We are Easter people – people of hope. Let’s be that every day.
What does that look like? Being an Easter person – a person of hope. Let me define hope with the help of Merriam Webster.
1: to desire with expectation of obtainment or fulfillment
2 : to expect with confidence : trust
Let’s start with #1. Hope is when I have an expectation that something will come to be. I desire it to be so I hope it’ll happen. I may have to wait along time. I may never get some things I hope for. I have been told by many to lower my expectations or else I will just get disappointed. In some parts of my life, that is true. However, when it comes to the plans God has for me, I can expect away. I can’t see or even know all that is before me. I do know that I hope for all the things He has planned. I look forward to His plans unfolding before me. I don’t always wait patiently. I usually wait very impatiently. Sorry God. When it comes, or even just a piece of it comes, I rejoice and give God glory. I see Him show up daily. This is hope – pieces of life and God’s plan unfolding before me. I can trust in that.
For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
~ Romans 8:24-25 NIV
Definition #2 is my favorite because it is expectation with confidence. I find that I have less and less confidence in things happening the way I expect. However, in my faith, this shouldn’t be the case. I want to live with hope that is confident. I can because that is the very definition of faith – confidence in what we hope for. I can trust God and His promises. I can’t trust my plan but I can trust in His.
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
Ultimately, hope is Jesus. There is no hope without Jesus. I can hope it’ll be sunny tomorrow. I can hope my car makes it to the gas station before the tank runs dry. I can hope my kids thrive. I can’t guarantee these things. I can guarantee that Jesus will be with me whatever the weather. Jesus will provide a way if my car runs out of gas. I can know that Jesus walks with my children every step they take. Jesus is my hope in all things and He himself is hope.
For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.
~ I Thessalonians 2: 19-20 NIV
Let’s be Easter people – people of hope. When Jesus is your hope, you are safe to live expectantly and in confidence. Let’s be Easter people every day.
Dream Big! Pray Big!
I missed you. I missed writing. It has been a month. Let me explain. A month ago, I started working full-time. It has been 17 years since I worked outside the home. Yep, you read that correctly. I had the honor and privilege of being a stay at home mom for 17 years. I had hoped to stay in that role until all of my children graduated but circumstances dictated that extra income was needed. So, I needed the month to figure out my new rhythm and schedule. I am not there yet. However, I am ready to be back to you and my blog. I have a plan. I can write my blogs and schedule them to be posted on a certain day and time. I will set it to go out Mondays at 9 a.m. like I used to.
A bit about my blog process. I don’t have one. Ideas come to me all the time and if I don’t blog it then, I usually lose it. When I sit down to blog, I pray. I listen and then I type. That’s it. If you are using me as a model to start a blog, my process isn’t normal or even professional. However, my process is me and how God inspires me. My hope is I inspire you.
During this month of transition, my oldest child turned 18. She also decided which college to attend in the Fall. My son had his first volleyball game on his school team. My middle daughter won MVP of her Varsity Soccer Team. I dealt with sibling rivalry. I taught my son how to make his own breakfast. I cried. I yelled. I smiled. I laughed. I comforted friends. Friends comforted me. Life happened in this past month. I missed sharing it all with you. There is too much to catch you up on, so let’s start fresh.
I’m back implies I’ve been gone. My blog was gone but I was still thinking of you and ideas to share with you. So I was still partially with you. Yet, I was reminded today that God never says “I’m back.” He never leaves. He doesn’t have to say “sorry I was distracted.” He never is distracted. He wouldn’t show up with flowers and an apology. However, we should. We are the ones who step away when God stands firm. He follows us into our despair, our anger, our frustration, our melt down, our joy, our happy distractions, our daily life. We are the ones who walk away, or take a break, or forget. Not God.
I may be back but God has been here all along. That brings me hope. That gives me purpose. That helps me when I feel so lost I can’t see straight. And it reminds me that you will welcome me back and my blog even though I walked away for a month. I know that you are forgiving people. You are giving people. You are people on a journey to know God more each day. I am back but God never left.
“…because God has said,
“Never will I leave you;
never will I forsake you.”
~Hebrews 13:5b NIV
Dream Big! Pray Big!