JUNE 20
       THE IMPORTANCE OF HOPE 
 
You learned in yesterday's devotional reading that God wants to turn your valleys of trouble into renewed hope.  You may have lost hope because of: 
-A broken relationship. 
-Your financial condition. 
-Your inability to find a job. 
-A chronic illness. 
-Delayed fulfillment of promises from God. 
 
You may think things will never improve and that there is nothing to look forward to in the future.  You are not having a faith crisis, but a hope crisis.   
 
The Bible says "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (Hebrews 11:1).  The Amplified Version translates this as:  "Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]". 
   
Faith is generated by hope.  Its substance is things hoped for and that is why it is so important.  Hope is defined as confident expectation and happy anticipation, If you do not feel this way spiritually, then you may be experiencing a hope crisis. Faith reveals things you do not see with the natural senses.  
 
When you lose hope, your faith is affected because you no longer feed substance to your faith. Your vision of spiritual destiny is ultimately affected, because hope feeds the faith that gives you the assurance of the things you do not see.  When you lose hope, you are tempted to turn away from God and walk in your own ways (Jeremiah 8:12).  Hope is the anchor of the soul that prevents you from drifting spiritually (Hebrews 6:18-19). 
 
  Many great people in the Bible had just cause to lose hope. Abraham had no hope in the natural of birthing a son.  Joseph was betrayed and abandoned.  Moses was exiled on the backside of the desert.  Job lost everything. Esther's people were condemned to die.  Jairus' daughter was already dead and Mary and Martha lost their brother before Jesus arrived.  Even the Apostle Paul despaired of life at one point.   
 
  And then there were the disciples on the way to Emmaus who, when asked why they were so sad, replied:  "But we were hoping that it was He Who would redeem and set Israel free"  (Luke 24:21, AMP).  All of these people lost hope, but had their hopes rekindled and went on to fulfill their destinies.   And to you, God says to you today the words of Jeremiah 29:11:  "I know what I'm doing. I have it all planned out--plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for"  (The Message Bible).   "For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope"  (The Living Bible). 
 

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