Posts Tagged ‘one hope’

…If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14

The Way of Escape

While walking through the streets of Haiti, or sharing a meal at base camp, or as I lay in bed at night, I could not help but ponder, “What’s the solution to Haiti’s problems.” Haiti needs a sound government, a solid infrastructure, and a stable economy. They need leaders of industry and commerce to step-up to the challenge of investing in their nation. They need roads and sewers and running water and workable soil to farm. Haiti needs all these things and so much more, but the reality is that Haiti needs Jesus.

Think about it; without Jesus Christ, what is the relief effort really affording the typical Haitian? We can clothe, and feed, and house these souls in need, but to what end; to make them more comfortable on this earth before allowing them to slip away into hell? Our Lord would not have us offer temporary salvation, which is why everything that is done in Haiti or for Haiti, must be intertwined with the Good News of Jesus Christ.

From an eternal perspective, any relief effort that excludes the Gospel propagates the lie that tells each and every non-Christian, “Don’t worry; you’re going to be okay.” Eternally speaking, it is the cruelest thing a person could convey. At the very least, all secular relief efforts should be combined with those espousing Jesus Christ as the enduring remedy.

Having said that, I discovered my efforts in Haiti were largely secularized because I was unable to speak the language. I found some who spoke English and handed out many Christian-Creole tracts, but I realized the critical importance of being partnered with native pastors who could convey the Gospel message. What a blessing it is to know that long after I left, there will be Haitian pastors ministering to both the physical and spiritual needs of this great nation.

What YOU Need to Do

When this tragedy struck, so many of us were very quick to make a donation towards the relief efforts, but this is not enough. Christians, we need to give something on a regular basis. I would encourage every believer who is reading this now to affiliate themselves with any Christian ministry whereby they could give at least once-a-month. It makes no matter what amount you give and to what ministry you donate, but do it and have it automatically withdrawn so you will not forget.

The sad truth is that America is quickly forgetting Haiti; it is yesterday’s news. The media has set Haiti aside because the news must be fresh and exciting in order to promote advertising slots and relief work (in their eyes) does not sell. In a very real sense we are allowing the media to determine what is important to us; all the more reason why I implore you to search out a Christian ministry where you can give at least once a month.

The Work Has Begun

I chose a good day to leave Haiti; if I had stayed I would not have been able to do any work—the entire country was shut down for three days of prayer. As we drove through the streets of Port Au Prince to the bus station, we found the roads clogged with people walking to local churches or open areas where the Good News was being proclaimed. Where these places were packed beyond capacity, people overflowed onto the streets and plopped down to listen and pray. I have heard reports of thousands repenting and giving their lives to Jesus Christ. In order for Haitians to rise above the ashes, this must continue ~and~ these people must be discipled in their new faith.

All of this makes satan and his demons very mad. Non-believing factions will be rising up to combat the Christian relief and restoration efforts. For the non-believer, satan is a powerful adversary, but for the Christian he was rendered powerless by what Christ Jesus did on the cross at Calvary, therefore the body of Christ must not submit to the secular position; we must be resolute in our determination to bring the Gospel message at any and all cost. The people of Haiti’s singular hope must be in Christ alone.

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13


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And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint… Romans 5:3-5

List Your Hopes

So what are you hoping for? A new job? A new spouse? An improved house? What makes your hope-list? Maybe your hope is for someone else; your child perhaps, that he or she will succeed in college, find a suitable mate, a career, and so on and so forth. I submit to you that we should toss them all aside, for these are not hopes, at least by Biblical standards. Please keep reading.

Throw Them All Away, Save One

Maybe you’re thinking, “I’m not throwing away all my hopes. That’s an absurd notion.” Well the truth be told, I’m not suggesting you purge yourself of all hopes, but advising that you get rid of all of them save one—the hope of eternal life with our Lord and Savior in Heaven. Why? Because that singular hope is the only one that will never disappoint. To help us gain a better grasp of the concept, consider this quote from Pete Warren, a Christian Musician residing now in Nashville, TN.

Hope Was the Enemy

“It resonates with me conceptually, because I’ve lived it. I recall over a decade ago, my then wife left me for another man. I had this false hope it’d all work out. I thought it was hope in God, but it was not. I got over it fairly quickly. I realized that “hope (outside of our Heavenly hope) was the enemy.”

To that we might say, “But what about when things work out for the good?”

What the Lord through His word is teaching is that it is reasonable to aspire towards these things, like a good marriage or a better job, but we are not to put our hope in these things for in due time they will all come to an end—even if they end on a good note, end they will.

Consider the hope-list you made earlier. What would you foresee your circumstances if none of them came to pass? Would it be a crushing blow to the person you perceive yourself to be or are you the type to shake it off and commence to fashion new hopes? To what end I’d ask you—to what end–to be disappointed again?

I cannot begin to tell you how many testimonies I’ve heard from Christian athletes who strived and hoped to attain the highest awards their vocations tendered—and got them! We’re talking Olympic Gold Medals, World Series trophies, and Super Bowl rings. Their earthly hopes were realized and inevitability do you know what they all said? Afterwards, after the trophies were stashed away and the cameras were turned off, there was barrenness; a hope–less void. Their achieved hope, they soon discovered, had no sustaining qualities. In many instances, the only saving grace was that in their despair, they came to know Jesus Christ.

For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. Matthew 11:30

I submit to you that if your walk with Jesus Christ is not light and easy, the most-likely cause is that you have more than One hope in your life. Think about it. Have you ever said or thought of your Christian faith as hard?

“I share the Good News with my friends, ” you say, “and they roll their eyes. At work people avoid me and make comments behind my back. Let’s not even talk about my family.”

What Were You Hoping For?

When you make a statement like that, chances are you have put to much hope in your friends, your family, and other relationships. Unquestionably we aspire to have good associations with others, but when they falter, do we falter as well? We most certainly will if that’s where our hope lies. The doctrine the Lord is putting forth is this: if we are determined to have one singular focus, that is One Hope, the yoke of Jesus will always be easy, the burden, although still a burden, will be light and we will not be disappointed.

Can you cope with just one hope? The maturing Christian can.

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