Is It Hope Or A Wish?

These days the words hope and wish are used interchangeably but when we look at how hope is used in the Bible we find there is much more to hope.

Wishful Thinking

I have a confession to make: every time I hear about the lotto going above $100 million I buy myself a few tickets. I know spending $5 on the lotto is a waste but I do it anyhow. I then spend the next few days hoping and wishing I could win.

I fanaticize about what I would do with that money and even try and bargain with God about how much good I could do if I had that kind of money.

Needless to say; I have yet to win.

The way that we use the word ‘hope’ today I can rightfully say, “I hope to win the lotto.”

This is because hope, these days, is nothing more than a wish.

We say things like:

  • I hope to be rich one day
  • I hope to win the lotto
  • I hope I get a promotion

or if you are single

  • I hope he/she likes me

You could easily replace the word ‘hope’ with ‘wish’ in any of these and they would mean the exact same thing.

In scripture however there is a completely different type of hope.

Biblical Hope

The scriptures show ‘hope’ to be something more than a mere wish. They show that hope is much more powerful.

The Bible uses Abraham as the perfect example of what it means to have hope for something:

In hope against hope he (Abraham) believed, so that he might become a father of many nations according to that which had been spoken, “SO SHALL YOUR DESCENDANTS BE.” Without becoming weak in faith he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old, and the deadness of Sarah’s womb; yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.
Romans 4:18-21

In other words: Abraham could see his situation and knew it was hopeless without God but because of the promise God had given him, he hoped for the promise anyhow.

Hope is the joyful anticipation that God will do what He has promised.

Losing Hope

One of the worst things we can do is to lose hope. I say this not because losing hope makes you a bad person but because losing hope prevents your blessing from taking place.

We all lose hope from time to time. We hide it by saying the right things and sounding like we believe but inside we are doubt it could ever happen.

When you find yourself doubting ask God to remind you of His promise to you. Ask Him to remind you exactly why that dream is in your heart in the first place. God will remind you just as He reminded Abraham many times before Abraham finally received a child.

Hope Against Hope

When we have a promise from God our wishes are replaced by hope (faith) and there are no limitations on hope. This moves you from a positive attitude about something to a prophetic vision of the future because of God’s promises and plans for your life.

Like it or not this makes your “comfort zone” your enemy. It makes your reasoning and logic your enemy. It makes your strategy and planning your enemy.

God’s desire is that you would become what He promised and those promises are always beyond what we are able to do on our own.

You will only see these promises fulfilled when you put aside your unbelief and hope in the promises He has given you. You will only see God’s promises fulfilled when, like Abraham, you learn to hope against hope.

Question: Share a dream you used to have hope for so that we can pray together and ask God to renew that promise so that you may hope for it once again. You can leave a comment by clicking here.