It wasn’t that long ago that by missing God’s goal for us, we weren’t living a very “smart” life. But God saved us from all of that. It was all His doing. He is God and in a very good mood.
It was not anything we could have figured out on our own. He gave us a very good bath. So we are all clean now by way of the Holy Spirit. He has been so generous to us. Through Jesus we are living a new life. What a gift to have our relationship restored with Him.
And there is more. We get to live this new life forever. No end to it at all. We are people of hope?
At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:3-7 TNIV
A curious warning is given to us in Peter’s first letter. There he tells us to be ready to give the reason for the hope that lies within us to everyone who asks (3:15). Now, what’s strange about that passage is this: no one ever asks.
When was the last time someone stopped you to inquire about the reason for the hope that lies within you? You’re at the market, say, in the frozen food section. A friend you haven’t seen for some time comes up to you, grasps you by both shoulders and pleads, “Please, you’ve got to tell me. Be honest now. How can you live with such hope? Where does it come from? I must know the reason.” Has this ever happened to you? Under any circumstances?
Yet God tells us to be ready, so what’s wrong? To be blunt, nothing about our lives is worth asking about. There’s nothing intriguing about our hopes, nothing to make anyone curious. Not that we don’t have hopes; we do. We hope we’ll have enough after taxes this year to take a summer vacation. We hope our kids don’t wreck the car. We hope our favorite team goes to the World Series. We hope our health doesn’t give out, and so on. Nothing wrong with any of those hopes; nothing unusual, either.
Everyone has hopes like that, so why bother asking us? It’s life as usual. Sanctified resignation has become the new abiding place of contemporary Christians. No wonder nobody asks.
Do you want the life of any Christian you know?
Against all odds. Don’t give up hope. Some people change. Love finds a way.
— Kenny Chesney
This is an essential item. Without hope, I am lost every day. In fact, every minute of every day.
And so, when I am filled with Him and the power of His HOLY Spirit, I hope unswervingly. I don’t deviate from hope at all. This leads me to maturity. This leads me to completeness.
But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13
This seems pretty timely. The economy goes up and down. That creates a lot of uncertainty. A lot of us trust in it our 401K. Better to trust in God who provides for us according to His richness. We should be rich in good deeds. We should be generous. We should share with those in need.
Then there is God’s economy. It is certain. It will never evaporate from in front of our eyes. God’s economy doesn’t need a bailout. He is in a good mood. He is generous. He has plenty to go around.
Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life. 1 Timothy 6:17-19