Please take a moment to more closely consider the merits of this claim… this promise… this amazing guarantee: Hope is one of the most cherished founts of our everyday purpose, our light in the darkness, our energy to rise and face the happiest and the cruelest of days. Hope is the helmet of salvation—the promised glory of one day standing face-to-face with God—which we wear when properly girded against the wide and deep war of this broken seen and unseen world. Hope, when absent, turns into despair across all classes, creeds, colors, and claims of mankind while opening wide the gates of idolatry and death. Hope is huge!
And if, for whatever sovereign reason, God may respond to our needs in ways our comparatively puny expectations of life may be thwarted in, if we trust in God regardless, praise Him in any and all circumstances, our faith, our obedience, and our love for God and for others will be matured, grown-up like an Oak of Righteousness—strong, deep, undaunted in all and every gale, a shade and resting place for many, and more fruitful than we could ever dare hope for or imagine:
The Prophet Isaiah said, “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor” (Isaiah 61:1-4).
So, allow me to spin what Oswald Chambers said in another way, “If your hopes are being disappointed right now, it means that they are being purified… and if you will, in faith, allow God’s promises, love, and care for you to have its way, you will be given the unspeakable blessing (and challenges) of having the same calling as the greatest prophet in all of history… exemplified in Isaiah… and incarnated in God-with-us, Jesus Christ!
Please read the passage from Isaiah again… Have you been saved, and sent to serve?
Is the Isaiah passage some pie-in-the-sky, by-and-by, fanciful, metaphoric, “the impossible dream” thing? Absolutely not! This is nothing more and nothing less than being born-again and commissioned into a mission as a Disciple of Jesus Christ in a broken world, until we die, or He returns to make all things new.
This is our one true calling that is deepened, strengthened, and made more and more fruitful each and every time we place or hope—purified by our trust in God and our witness and works in service to a dark and decaying world—in the many promises God has so graciously bestowed upon us.
Lastly, even though we’re mixing our metaphors a wee bit, “hope purified as to pure gold” that results in a life akin to being “oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor”… will result in a picture of fruitfulness like few others: An acorn containing countless other oak trees… all bearing sweet, delicious, drooling-down-the-chin fruit for God’s glory and the blessing of His plan, His Son, and His people.
Please nourish your faith by feasting on the promises of your purified hope, your being an oak of righteousness, and being as fruitful as acorns galore… each day!
‘Till we feast again, your seat will be reserved at The Training Table,