Has God ever made you aware of your rebellion towards Him? It’s not a pretty picture, is it? Many times I have wandered out from beneath the shadow of His wing because I chose to slosh around in a pool of sorrow and frustration. Yes, I chose to take matters into my own hands. I chose to take my eyes off the One who has never failed me. And I hit bottom. Wandering alone, I quickly became discouraged and overwhelmed. Through the tears, though, I could make out a blurred image of my Heavenly Father watching over me. I could hear Him affectionately calling my name. Even in the midst of a rebellious heart, God never left my side and, because of this, I was able to “keep a grip on hope”.
“I remember it all – oh, how well I remember – the feeling of hitting the bottom. But there’s one other thing I remember, and remembering, I keep a grip on hope. GOD’s loyal love couldn’t have run out, His merciful love couldn’t have dried up. They’re new every morning. How great is Your faithfulness! I’m sticking with GOD (I say it over and over). He’s all I’ve got left.” ~ Lamentations 3:19-24, The Message
Sweet friend, He has never left your side either.
The Hebrew word for hope in this passage is yachal. Yachal means to “steadfastly expect His mercy, His salvation, and His rescue, and while waiting, not take matters into one’s own hand.” Expectation is of utmost importance here.
When I was pregnant with each of our three children I lived in constant expectation. I knew that I knew that at the appointed time I would hold my child in my arms. The expectation gave me strength to endure the sleepless nights and the morning rendezvous with the bathroom. The expectation caused me to prepare for something I had not yet seen because I knew what pregnancy entailed.
Faith is like that. Hoping in the Lord, yachal, is like that. When we develop our relationship with God in such a way that we know Him, then our fears can quickly give way to expectation. Like Jeremiah (the author of Lamentations), we are able to know and remember His steadfast love. We can remember God’s mercies, His faithfulness. We can remember because He has shown Himself to be steadfast, immovable – faithful. Oh my goodness, how faithful is our God!
And when we remember, we can keep a grip on hope. The Good News Bible reads, “The Lord’s unfailing love and mercy still continue, fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise” (Lamentations 3:23).
As sure as the sunrise…did you feel your heart skip a beat?
Father, What would we do without Your mercy and Your love? For sure, we would have been consumed by now. But, because of your faithfulness we can grip hope. We can wait expectantly for your intervention. Forgive our stubborn ways. Cleanse us of all pride that causes us to try to handle life in our own strength. We love You, Father, and we stand in awe of your goodness.
If you received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to worship with Fernando Ortega as he sings, “Lord of Eternity”.