When hope collides with faith, which collides with reality.

5 Nov

I struggled for a long time with hope, faith and reality.  In fact, if I’m totally honest… I still do.  It’s a very tricky thing to sort it all out.  I can make it sound crystal clear on paper, which I will here for you… but living it out – well, I’ll let you be the judge of if it starts to all blend together and get a little cloudy.

Hope –  the feeling that what is wanted can be had.

Faith – confidence or trust in a person or thing.

Reality – resemblance to what is real.

I’m going to speak on a very specific topic in my life because well, that’s what I do. It’s the only way I honestly know how to make what I’m sharing relatable.

My husband and I have lived in our house for over 9 years now.  From years 3 – 7 1/2, we tried to sell our house.  It did not sell.

There was a deep, oh so deep that the word deep seems shallow to use but I’ll go with it, deep HOPE inside of me that what I wanted to happen could happen.  I wanted the house to sell, so I hoped that it would.

I also had a very strong FAITH that no matter how terrible the economy seemed, that I could have confidence in God that He is bigger than every situation and he could have very easily sold the house anyway.

I also am VERY MUCH a realist, which can sometimes comes across as pessimistic, and knew that because the economy was/is upside down … and the appraisal would be horrific compared to what we still owe … and who in their right mind would want a house as small as ours …. especially when they can buy a house twice our size for half the price in town with this messed up economy … that the REALITY that the situation of what were real facts about our life and the situation we were in was not going to bring about the selling of our house.

I hoped the house would sell. I had faith that God could do it.  I even knew he could bring a cash buyer and the bank appraisal wouldn’t matter. But I never lost sight of reality that it wasn’t going to happen.

So did I not really have faith?  The Bible says, if we have faith as small as a mustard seed, we can tell a mountain to move and it will. I can’t think of a bigger mountain than our house selling… and it didn’t.

Was our house selling not going to bring glory and honor to the Lord or help us fulfill the purpose God has for us so He did what fulfilled His will and not what we were asking for?

Are we stuck living out the consequences of our mistake to purchase this house, not as punishment but as flat-out reality that bad choices have consequences? Or just that living in a fallen world is disappointing?

Are the lessons we’re learning and the way it is changing our character preparing us for our roles in eternity so the simple pleasures and conveniences of this life are worth the sacrifice?

Are we going to be rewarded later for being patient and content and not breaking our signed committment to the bank to pay them what we agreed to pay them on the terms we agreed to pay them but accepting a short sale or bankruptcy to get to the end we really want?

 

Do you have a situation you can insert into these questions?

Why won’t God heal my cancer? I have hope and faith that He will, even though the reality is that there is no cure.

Will I get that promotion?

Why can’t we get pregnant?

Should I try to restore a broken relationship?

Will my child come back to the Lord?

 

I don’t know if I’ll ever know this side of Heaven all the exact answers to the questions I just posed.

But what I do know is this.  GOD IS SOVEREIGN!  He loves me.  His word is absolutely always true NO MATTER WHAT happens or doesn’t happen.  He will work all things together for good.  He is refining my character to be like Christ.  He will protect me.  He will provide for my needs. I can trust Him. He will never leave me nor forsake me.  He is preparing a place for me.

Practical Application –

Apply God’s sovereignty to your questions today.  When your hope and faith collide with your reality – take a deep breath and remember that God doesn’t treat us or love us by performance.  And He is ALWAYS eternity minded … even when we are not.

 

 

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