Author’s Note: As the new year has approached, I have watched and listened as people fill with hope for a new year, a new start. However, I have been fighting a lack of hope – a sense of empty promises spoken too many times. As I meditated on scripture in frustration, feeling a sense of emptiness, God touched my heart and responded to my heartache with the love of a Father and the truth of a sovereign God. I am no teacher of the Word and this is no doctrine. Like a long, cool glass of water when I still have a mile to hike to the top of a mountain, this has brought me renewed hope, faith, peace and confidence in the God of my salvation: that He loves us more than we can ever comprehend, that His ways are so much higher than ours, that He is holding us in the palms of His hands, that He hears our heartaches and deepest sorrows and fears and he responds; He responds and He heals.
I pray these meditations encourage you as they have encouraged me.
“And the word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” — John 1:14
In God’s word are piles of promises: promises of healing, of family, of provision, of restoration, of love, and even vengeance. They are meant to bring hope.
“May the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” — Romans 15:13
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil; to give you a future and a hope.” — Jeremiah 29:11
In the King James this phrase “a future and a hope” is translated as “an expected end.” I like that better because it reflects a deeper meaning of hope.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” — Hebrews 11:1
Faith is the substance of things hoped for. You hope for things that you don’t have. You believe in Jesus for those things. Faith is the substance of your hope. What you hope for is made up of faith and faith comes through hearing the word.
“So then, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” — Romans 10:17
Jesus is the word. Jesus is the substance of the things you are hoping for. Jesus became flesh. The word became flesh. The substance of what you are hoping for has already become flesh. It has already become tangible.
People waited for thousands of years for Christ to come, for the word to become flesh and for the substance of their hopes to arrive. How does Jesus become your hopes fulfilled? Fulfilled in the flesh, a tangible way? That is a great mystery but we know this:
“In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.” — John 1:1-3
Jesus was the substance of all the tangible things in our lives since before he ever came to earth. Touch the soil you walk on, Jesus is the substance that created it. Touch a tree, a flower, hug someone, stargaze, swim, experience the world with your senses and realize that all things you encounter exist through and because of the Word, in and through Jesus.
It is in and through him that new things are created and sustained. It is in and through him that hopes are fulfilled. To have “an expected end”, as it says in Jeremiah, we must first have something we are expecting, something we are hoping for.
“In him was life, and that life was the light of mankind. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.” — John 1:4-5
Jesus is substance, and that substance is life. Before Jesus became flesh, he was the Word, he was with God and was God.
“If any one speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God.” — 1 Peter 4:11
The word of God is Jesus, Jesus is substance, flesh, life, and he is the life, the substance, the flesh of all that you hope for and believe for.
Promises were meant to be fulfilled. The word was meant to become flesh. Promises have been fulfilled in and through Jesus.
When we are in Jesus and He is in us, promises are fulfilled every time we speak their fulfillment. Speak as one who speaks the very words of God. Speak life. Speak Jesus.
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have not come to abolish them, but to fulfill them.” — Matthew 5:17
I pray for an increase of your hopes, an increase in your faith, and an increase in your promises fulfilled in and through Jesus! May his peace be with you and comfort you this year!