Romans 12-14

"Rejoice in your hope..."  Romans 12:12, RSV 

Have you ever watched an eight-year old waiting for his daddy to come home so that they can have a game of catch? Maybe he has been let down for a month of days in a row, but there is still that glowing optimism of youth that hopes that this is the day that daddy won't be too tired to play ball with him.

You see, though the son's hope may have been dashed time after time by a father that is just too tired to play that day, the boy still has the memory of the times when daddy wasn't too tired and when he did take the time to play. So, the little boy has faith that it will happen again, and it is in this anticipation that a small seed of faith first sprouts and then grows into a hope that is literally bursting with an eager and building joy.  

And, when daddy does finally say yes, there is a pure joy that can only be compared to a major leaguer hitting the game winning home run in the seventh game of the World Series! Hope has turned to reality and the rejoicing that comes with this moment has few equals in life.

Christians are to have this type of hope! We are to be looking forward to the day when we meet our Lord and Savior. His coming obviously hasn't happened yet, but we know by faith that it will. So we watch with eager anticipation, and a mounting hope that we know one day will turn into reality.

And we rejoice in that hope!

Do you... have that hope?

"More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that sufferings produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint, because we know that God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us."  Romans 5:3-5, RSV