Life can feel overwhelming – global terror steals inner security, relational upheaval punches fragile hearts, exhaustion from routine dampens joy. Viktor Frankel, a now-deceased neurologist, and psychiatrist noticed that more Jews died in concentration camps after a holiday like Christmas compared to other times of the year.
His answer as to why? A loss of hope.
Many Jews resolved that they would be home for the holidays. Which strengthened their internal resilience to carry on when their environment and bodies suggested otherwise. When the holiday season passed, their physical bodies began to decay as a reflection of the hope that was lost.
Hope is powerful. It sets our gaze beyond current negativities onto something better. Which births greater human physical and emotional resilience within the grip of all kinds of fatigue.
Where do you find your hope?
New ideas, human love, elected government officials? Financial security, family harmony, outward beauty? There are countless stories of astounding human resilience in the face of shocking forms of discouragement and crisis – stories that inspire greatly just upon their hearing. Yet as awesome as these accomplishments are, even the greatest resilience exhausts and is unpredictable. Fit bodies decay. Corruption lurks within governments. Relationships disappoint. Where then, should we place our hope?
You May Like: My Holiday Hope Toolbox
The Hope That Lies Deeper
Christ Himself offers us a different kind of hope. A hope that is implanted not in human strength but His own. Our hope in Him fuels mental freedom because our shame was removed at salvation. Hope in Him gives us peace in death itself because our eternal home is secure. It transforms our everyday perspective because our hearts are set beyond worldly desires into a willingness to endure brokenness for His sake. Our hope in Him empowers us with divine resilience because it is His life, not our own that holds us together and springs forth transformation from any life wreckage. Hope in Him keeps us focused on our goal to become more like Him. Our hope in Him brings joy because Jesus can’t be less than He is – and He is victorious.
Today, let’s ask Jesus to embolden us to spread His hope with greater wisdom and strength to our own lives and the world’s. The gospel is not only a message of eternal hope that we’re willing to die for but a message of present hope that we’re privileged to live for.
“Through him, we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:2-5 ESV)
CULTIVATE A HEART OF THANKSGIVING
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