Friday, December 26, 2014

to HOPE in living color

I admit it.  Sometimes I'm a sucker for those short, little, online facebook quizzes.  You've all seen them on your newsfeed before..."What Disney Princess are You?," "What State Should You Live in?," "How Good is Your Grammar?,"or  "How Well Do you Know the Words to Bohemian Rhapsody?"
Sometimes, I'm just curious to have these "answers" revealed.

More recently, I took a quiz called, "What Four Letter Word Best Describes You?"  After a few, short, no-brainer questions, my answer popped up:  HOPE.

"We have this HOPE as an anchor for the soul, 
firm and secure."
Hebrews 6:19

Tis the season for hope and resolution.  Hope for a better you.  Hope for a better me.  Hope for a better tomorrow.  Hope for a new year ablaze with all things "better."

Yet, some things can't get better.  Nothing gets better than Jesus.  Nothing tops the gift we've been given in Him.  We may want to change.  We may want others to change.  We may want our circumstances to change.  And while I've checked the boxes on all of the above, I am so thankful that I have a God who never changes.  A God who cannot get any better than He already is.

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever."
Hebrews 13:8

And the beauty of it all is that I don't have to get better to receive His best.  Read that again: 

I don't have to get better to receive His best.

Even in my unworthiness, His unconditional love reaches down and covers me.  It covers you. There's no earning it.  It's not a New Year's resolution we have to hold tightly to in discipline or else we find it's slipped from within our grasp.  It's there in our better.  And it's there in our worse.

And that's HOPE enough to carry us through. 
He is enough.

So, what does your HOPE hinge upon?  
Things that'll change?  
Or things that are firm and secure?

I've found that HOPE cannot exist where belief is absent; they hinge upon each other.  We hope because we believe.  We believe in possibilities.  We believe in dreams.  We believe in promises. We believe in prayer. We believe there is better somewhere out there within our reach.  And there's nothing "better" than Jesus, who is always within our reach.

Without HOPE, darkness shades and covers us, leaving us feeling empty and numb.  But HOPE changes that. HOPE shines light, and with that, perspective.  I've found that when the world around us is darkened in black and white and shades of gray, a small patch of HOPE, rooted in faith, can break open into a field of color blooming with peace and budding with joy.  And there's mysterious wonder in it all.

For to HOPE in Christ is to HOPE in living color.

It's believing that the black of our yesterdays will be worked out for our good and His glory.
It's believing that the white of our tomorrows still hold good and promise.
It's believing that on the horizon of our gray today color bursts forth when we're anchored in Him.

He is the anchor who keeps us afloat.
He is the One who steadies us in rising waters and through raging waves.
He is the air that fills our lungs with one more breath to keep moving forward and pushing through.
He is the One who keeps us looking upward, when life around us attempts to drown us under.

Life is so much better when there is HOPE in it.
For HOPE produces peace and gives birth to joy.
And HOPE is contagious.

No matter where you find yourself today, I promise you there is HOPE for the taking.
He is our HOPE. 

So, what is your New Year's Resolution?  When I contemplated mine, I vowed to better hold unswervingly to the HOPE I've found in Him.

My HOPE in living color.
You can catch it too.
Resolve to join me if you will.

"Let us hold unswervingly to the HOPE we profess, for He who promised is faithful."
Hebrews 10:23