Hope is essential for life. But optimistic anticipation can also bring disappointment when we look forward to something that doesn’t materialize. We may well ask together with the psalmist "Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? (Psalms 42:5a)
So how do we determine where to place our hope—and what our response should be if it isn’t fulfilled?
Hope is secure when it’s aligned with the Lord’s desires, which are revealed in Scripture. However, many of our expectations are based on wishes or feelings. Disappointment with God can occur whenever our expectations do not coincide with His plan. Even when hope is based on a scriptural promise, the Lord may not fulfill it in the way or the timeframe that we expect.
Contentment lies in being able to distinguish subjective hopes, which originate with us, from our ultimate hope in the Lord, who is sovereign and good. Then, even when an earthly expectation isn’t realized as we wished, we can have joy, remembering that our eternal hope in God is sure.
Let us do as the psalmist says, "Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God." (Psalms 42:5b)
Enjoy relaxing on this Youth Day.
Mike and Daphne
(Reference Dr Charles Stanley for his thoughts on Psalm 42)