At Calvary this summer we are diving into the psalms for a bit of refreshment. Few things refresh our hearts like hope. Psalm 39:7 reads… “And so, Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you.” (NLT)
I’ve been thinking a lot about that word this week… Hope. I’ve talked to so many people lately who are searching for hope, hanging on to hope. Some have even given up hope. Last week a young man in our community — a graduating senior with my son Jake — gave up hope. Somehow he came to the conclusion that the best answer was to quit living. I’ve talked with a number of couples lately who are inches away from giving up hope that their marriage could ever again be healthy, whole and vital.
The Hebrew word, the word in the Old Testament most frequently translated as hope is the word qawvaw. The word literally means “Cord.” Hope is a cord. Hope is a connection. Hope is a rope. Which means that hope as an object. The object of our hope is whatever we find at the end of our rope. Some of us are tying ourselves to things that can leave us shaken. Strong hope requires that we tie ourselves to something solid, something immovable.
Ask yourself, “Where is my hope?” “For what am I hoping?” “To what am I attaching myself for strength and security?” “What cords am I grabbing?”
The world doesn’t give us very solid connections does it? Some of us are struggling with that right now, aren’t we? You tied your cord to the economy and your nest egg, but then the stock-market fell and you’ve been shaken. You tied your cord to the future you had all planned out but something happened recently and you’ve been reminded that you aren’t in control, that life ends, and you’ve been shaken. You tied your cord to your marriage, your children, or a friend, and even though God has created us for community, if we put our hope in people, hearts get shaken.
So where will you put your hope? A higher power isn’t high enough. We don’t need a watered-down feel-good “Chicken-Soup-for-the-Soul” God. We need to anchor, we need to harness our lives to an unmovable, unshakable, rock of a refuge-giving God.
Psalm 62:5-6 reads,
I wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will not be shaken.
If my cord is connected; if my heart is harnessed; if my life is tied into God. I will not be shaken. That’s hope.