You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘hopelessness’ tag.


“Don’t forget to do good…”

I’ve often heard people misquote this verse and others with a similar message to justify their social activism and political agendas even though their ‘actions’ are completely contradictory to the context and whole of the Bible message.

‘Good’ can not be defined in human terms because ‘good’ in human terms is relative to the situation at hand and the mindset of the person or group defining it. Is the good you are doing helping the good of the majority of people who think like you do?

On the other hand, ‘good’ defined by God’s standards is impossible to attain without the presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit. The guidance of the Holy Spirit will never contradict God’s word. It is what empowered Jesus during the wilderness temptations to stay true to his mission and resist satanic influences. Each of the things Satan tempted Christ to do were not wrong in and of themselves but the motive behind them was!

When we consider our ‘good’ actions measure them according to the standards God instituted. Then thank him profusely for grace because even at your best you can’t do everything perfect. Thank him for his inner peace too because if you stand with God, you will ultimately stand against culture and society.

You’ll fair better in the long run when you stand with the one who holds your eternity in his hand that you will standing with those whose future is limited to this world. Your good deeds should be done according to God’s standards, not the whims and fickle ways of culture.


Desire. We all have it at different levels. It’s desire that drives us to work every day. It’s desire that fuels our relationships. It is desire that drives us to fulfill, or attempt to fulfill our dreams.

Desire in and of itself isn’t a bad thing. It’s an emotion God has created and placed within each of us. Desire can be destroyed by constant criticism. Desire can be wounded by our tendency to focus on failure and our past. Desire can be crippled by outside forces beyond our control or choices in our past that disqualify us.

On the other hand, the psalmist frequently tells of his desire for a closer relationship with his God. The Apostles tell us in the New Testament writings to ‘earnestly desire’ the things of heaven.

Society tells us to desire those things our eyes can see, our hands can touch, our pride can rest in. If you gain all those things, we are told, you will find fulfillment, contentment and happiness.

But those things will never give us the peace and satisfaction we seek because they are temporal. The secret to contentment is a close walk with Jesus Christ Don’t be sucked in by the things of the world, bask in the fulfillment of eternal things: love, grace, mercy, goodness, kindness, gentleness, peace, joy. These things can’t be bought or stolen, and they last for eternity.


I’ve read these verses a hundred times before I realized what total devastation is being described. The entire economy of the nation Israel was dependent on agriculture. We are blessed today to be diverse in our economy and global in our accessibility of the staples of life. Not so the readers of Habakkuk.

We are a generation of the entitled. We naturally expect that if we are uncomfortable, someone is to blame and someone better fix it. If our marriage is unfulfilling we seek other partners; if our church isn’t entertaining enough, or doesn’t make me feel happy, I’ll go elsewhere; If you talk about sin, or point out my failings you are judgmental and I’m going to unfriend you.

We tend to make the same expectations of God. But the testimony of Habakkuk, Job, David, James, Peter and many others in scripture (including Jesus himself!) sends a message loud and clear to those of us who claim to love God and believe in his sovereignty.

The rest of the world can fall apart around me. My relationships my fail me. My job may not pay enough to meet my needs. I may not like the music at my church. My health my be faltering. I may be ashamed of my _____________ (fill this one in yourself). Yet, although I may not understand; although I may struggle to believe; although I may not see the evidence, YET I put my trust in you O God because I know, ultimately your way is best.


I love the infomercials that try to lure you with the ‘hidden deal’. “You think this is good? Wait until you see what is behind door number 2!”

I’m guessing this must work often enough to make it worth their while because they (whoever ‘they’ are) have been luring us for years.

Our human mind is unbelievably conscious of the sensual. We are sensual beings. Our lives are built on what we can see, what we can touch, what we can smell or hear or feel. Anything that goes beyond this is considered out of the ordinary.

This is yet another amazing dichotomy of Christianity. Our faith isn’t built on the sensory. We believe in a God we can not see, yet who reveals himself in a multitude of very real ways. We put our hope in a world we can not see and never ends. The concept of eternity boggles my mind!

When we focus on our senses, we are limited. When we put all our hope in the here and now, it gets discouraging. Paul writes in Colossians to never forget we are merely temporary sojourners in a foreign land. Homeless immigrants longing for the homeland, and what a homeland that must be.

Take a few moments and invite your mind to imagine what the world would be like if you could speak anything into existence. You got rid of prejudice. You destroyed every disease known to man. You made all food health food. You destroyed greed of every kind. Keep going. Let your mind go wild! Then realize that your wildest imagination doesn’t come close to what God has in store for you in eternity.

I can’t wait. While here, I’ll tell his story, but my heart is home with him. Thank you Jesus.


We live in a fast-paced world in which social media, the internet and rapidly changing cultural values are placed front row, and center in our lives. It seems like everything that those in my baby boomer generation counted as stable is falling away. Some of that, to be honest, is a good thing. I’m beginning to realize the ‘simple life’ I grew up in was often a cover-up for an undercurrent of things that never should have happened.

The trade off, however isn’t always positive. With all the ‘advancements’ our society has made, one thing that seems to have been left behind is hope. HOPE. Such a simple word, yet so complex. Wars have been fought in the name of hope; lives have been destroyed in the search for hope.

Hope is elusive on the human plane. We seek it in relationships. We seek it through political and social action. We seek it, or at least try to escape it’s evil twin– hopelessness — through chemicals. We may even try it through religion. But none of that really satisfies. People fail. Government fails. Gaining rights for one group rapes other groups of their ‘rights’. Religion only offers surface comfort for the pain.

There is only one thing that offers total hope and that is Jesus. He’s not about rules and religion. He has no expectations for you to measure up to who he is. When we place our focus on who he is, and what he has done; when we realize the hopelessness of this world is temporary and a better world awaits us; when we realize the pain we suffer now is nothing compared to the joy we have in him, we also find that elusive thing we’ve sought for: HOPE.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3,708 other followers

RSS Podcasts from Zion

  • Dangerous Prayer: Break Me
    From our series, "Dangerous Prayer" God uses those most powerfully who have been broken most severely.
  • Dangerous Prayer: Search Me
    From our series "Dangerous Prayer: Search Me Powerful, effective prayer is risky because it causes us to open up completely to God.
  • Stand Strong!!
    From our series, "Unexplainable Joy: Studies in Philippians" Joy doesn’t come without conflict. Standing strong may not always bring happiness, but it does bring joy.
  • God With Us In the Storm
    From our series, "God With Us" Storms are Gods way of reminding us of his existence and empowering us to help others.
  • God With Us In the Wilderness
    From our series, "God With Us" During those times of wilderness wandering God reveals himself if we listen. ‬‬

LinkedIn

Candle Lighter Award

Built With Grace

Archives

May 2019
S M T W T F S
« Apr    
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  
Follow Built with Grace on WordPress.com
%d bloggers like this: