What have you hoped for? A solid marriage? Good health? A happy and healthy family? That the kids would embrace your faith and have the fortitude to stand firm in the winds of popular culture? A parent’s world can get rocked when a child drifts from the faith and begins to see truth as more subjective than absolute.
Is there fear at work in your life that dampens the hope you have? The Chapman University Survey of American Fears listed the top ten fears people face today - Harm to a loved one, or a loved one dying, are at the top of the list. For parents, losing a child to illness or accident is the number one fear. It has been said that the hardest goodbye is the one you never thought you would have to say. Can hope see through fear like that?
And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope never disappoints because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, Who has been given to us. – Romans 5:2-5. … rejoice in our sufferings… Paul puts all suffering in context of the suffering Jesus endured on the cross. With that perspective, whatever is suffered in this life can only provide a small glimpse of what Jesus went through for our sake. Having that perspective on suffering encourages perseverance that develops character more like Christ. Such character has hope that sees through fear. Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. – 1Peter 1:3-4. … new birth into a living hope … Peter is reminding us that because Jesus walked out of the tomb, He conquered death. Alistair Begg, pastor of Parkside Church, put it like this, “Jesus is alive, and every new day can remind us of His resurrection. Every morning, we awaken to a new sunrise as a reminder of that glorious day when the trumpet will sound. … As believers, we have been born again with the living hope that because Jesus Christ was victorious over the grave, we will forever be with Him. That is how we look at death: we look through it. And once we are able to die without fear, we are able to live without it too.” (Truth for Life Devotional). Embrace the new birth into a living hope to look through fears in this world.
Hope is often grounded in what was supposed to happen. It is a natural thing for kids to follow their parents’ lead on the faith front. And it is normal for kids to outlive their mom and dad. But God worked beyond the natural and the normal when He “so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”- John 3:16. Hope grounded in the eternal perspective Jesus the Christ offers, looks through fears being faced today.
Prayer guide: Lord, thank You for Your Word and the eternal perspective offered through Your Son. I confess I have let temporal fears of failure dampen hope in my life. I have said, “I can’t” when I really meant, “I won’t.” Forgive me. Grant me strength to rejoice in all sufferings and embrace fully the new birth into a living hope grounded in the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus the Christ. Help me look through fears being faced today and lead my family in the living hope that is the resurrected You. That is the dad You call me to be, and that is the dad my kids need to see. Amen.
A faithful father embraces new birth into a living hope to look through fears faced today.