My struggle with hope is an indication of how hard I find it to keep my focus on Jesus without being overwhelmed by our spiritual climate.
I look upon our situation in the Church and it seems to be without hope. Everywhere churches are closing and congregations shrinking. Yes there are notable exceptions, the mega churches that grow and grow, but these exceptions hide the big picture of the thousands of shrinking churches. However, there is hope. The only way we lose hope is when we fail to recognise that we are needy and must look to God and call out to Him for mercy. As Psalm 9 says,
“But God will never forget the needy; the hope of the afflicted will never perish.” (Psalm 9v18),
God watches over us; Jesus is our eternal hope. He is ready to save from whatever mess we find ourselves in – often because of our own failure. This is a great hope.
Psalm 9 also gives me an encouragement.
“Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” Psalm 9v10
My observation is that the Church is seeking Him. We may frequently be off beam in this search but there is a sincerity in our desire for Him. I find this encouraging. We may be harassed and helpless like sheep without a shepherd, but the Lord will never forsake those who seek Him.
We hope because Jesus is the One we hope in.
The original study – http://biblebase2adaringfaith.wordpress.com/2013/08/09/hope-for-the-hopeless-study/