9.30.2007

Svithe

So I've decided that I really haven't spent enough time in the New Testament--specifically in the second part, after the gospels. I need to remedy that, because I reread Paul's epistle to the Romans this morning and I think it might be my new favorite. One of the passages that made me stop and think was in chapter 4. Paul is discussing Abraham,

18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, "So shall thy seed be."

19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb:

20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;

21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.

"Who against hope believed in hope." First off, this is a beautiful phrase. But more than that, it's powerful.

I sometimes have to remind myself to believe in hope, or to choose hope rather than pessimism or discouragement. I mean, look at Abraham. He was promised things by God which seemed not only unlikely but biologically impossible. But look how he reacted. He didn't waste time trying to prove God wrong, trotting out all the reasons why he couldn't become a father. He didn't "stagger." He was "fully persuaded" that if God promises something then it will happen, even if the hows or whens aren't apparent.

I need to remind myself to be more hopeful--about life, about work, about everything. If nothing else, I'm happier when I'm hopeful. Hope gives me the motivation to move forward. It's positive and building. I don't think that fearing or predicting the worst protects me from disappointment. Instead it makes me unhappy, and then I spend so much time fretting that I don't notice the blessings and opportunities that are right in front of me.

7 comments:

coolmom said... [reply]

I read these very verses to day and had some of the same thoughts. I wonder how may others did also? What a wonderful time to be in the world to see these wonderful prophesies come true, and know that there are many others to come as well. Thank you for your insight. As always, I am so grateful to be your mom.

Scully said... [reply]

Awesome post! I was looking through the lessons in the YW manual and came across one labelled "Optimism" and my first thought was "How do I teach that w/out being a hypocrite." Luckily, I don't have to teach it, as it is a fast Sunday and someone else gets to teach. But it was a moment of truth. Thanks for sharing!

RC Cola! said... [reply]

Thanks, Nem. I really needed that.

Mary said... [reply]

Completely on your wavelength, sister. You are not alone!

Thank you for taking time to share these hopeful thoughts with us.

Science Teacher Mommy said... [reply]

Thanks for the snippet from Paul. I have a really hard time with him generally; I think I just need to search a little bit harder.

kristen said... [reply]

I've been studying the New Testament myself. Great stuff. And yes, I think we can all use a little more hope. Sometimes it's the 'hope' of Eternal Life that keeps me going.

Th. said... [reply]

.

Ah, hope.

Me too.

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