The hope that makes ‘unashamed’
“And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been
poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us”.
We who are in Christ have hope indeed.
I once heard that in a study that was carried out several years ago, Nigerians were identified as one of the happiest people on the planet. The writer of the report went further to point out that despite all the challenges that Nigerians face- political instability, corruption of government officials, inadequate social infrastructure etc, Nigerians still found a reason to rejoice and celebrate. Although I’m not certain who exactly carried out that research, I think I agree with their observations. In fact, I think I know why it is that we Nigerians carry on with our lives in such a way as to connote that we aren’t aware of the problems that our nation faces- it’s because Nigerians are very hopeful people. Our general acknowledgement of the sovereignty of God, I believe must be one of the reasons why we’re always hopeful. For as a typical Nigerian will say when things don’t go the way he/she hoped-‘God dey’
Hope. That word has taken on a new meaning for me in the past few weeks. A few days before my last post, a close friend lost her dad after a prolonged illness. On receiving the news, she prayed amidst tears that God would reverse the doctor’s report and raise her dad from the dead. However, after praying fervently for God’s supernatural intervention, she felt led to ask her siblings if they had succeeded in leading their father to Christ before he passed away like she had urged them to. Thankfully, her brother confirmed that their dad finally received Christ a few days before his passing.
You should have seen the transformation in her countenance after she was told her dad had passed away in Christ. Several people couldn’t believe that she had lost her father when they heard of his passing because she resumed much of her normal day to day activities like nothing had happened. When I got talking to her about whether she still wanted God to raise her dad from the dead, she said something which though many may see as an ordinary statement, I instead took as a sign of a firm assurance of faith. She said something like “Ify, he died in Christ, so I’m sure he’s resting and that’s my joy right now. Even though its painful that my father is no longer here with us, I’m happy because I know he’s in a better place’.
It’s one thing to say such words and it’s another thing to believe them. My friend believed her words and it showed in her attitude. Her strength in the midst of it all got me thinking about how fortunate we who know Christ are in terms of the hope that we have within us. Remember our anchor scripture “hope doesn’t make us ashamed because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts…” I now firmly believe that the only way we can have hope in the midst of the storms that we face is if we are aware of God’s love for us which He has poured into our hearts by His holy spirit. Furthermore, when we are aware of God’s love for us, then we know that he never allows us to go through challenges we cannot overcome (1 Corinthians 10 13). But better still, even in the face of the greatest challenge known to mankind-death, we who are in Christ still have hope! We can rejoice because Christ’s love for us has granted us access into heaven which itself is a far better place than any of us could imagine.
So my dear, regardless of what difficulties you may be encountering at the moment, do not lose hope because our hope in God’s love for us NEVER puts us to shame.