By: Eddie Mae Sims
Merriam-Webster Collegiate Definition:
Sustaining: To keep up, prolong, to keep going.
Hope: To expect or wish, a feeling that what one desires will happen.
Crisis: A time of danger or anxious waiting, the turning point in a disease toward life or death.
Word of God tells us about sustaining hope in times of crisis; Hope does not disappoint and in the following verses.
Romans 12:12 (NASB) rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer, God is the God of Hope.
Romans 15:13 (NSAB) Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
A mother who never gave up.
When I was a child, we became homeless. The minute we stepped off the train in Los Angeles, we were homeless and feeling lost. My stepfather, who said he would be there to pick us up, was not. I can’t imagine how my mother felt with six children and a husband that was not there for her. Even after waiting and fumbling around with six children, she called him again; there still was no answer. What would she do?
My grandparents lived in Los Angeles too. And I’m sure my mother had to be embarrassed to call them, but she had six children and nowhere to go. What alternative did she have? She called them, and they came.
We were a family in a crisis.
Yes, we were a family in a crisis. We lived with my grandparents for about six months. After that, we moved from place to place, house to house. I can’t presume to know what was going through my mother’s mind and how heavy her heart must have felt. But we had a mother who never gave up hope.
Yes, we were definitely a family in a crisis. Still, our mother kept praying, hoping, and trusting in God and in humanity. She believed in a God who had a plan and hope for her and her children.
The Apostle Paul reminds us in Romans 5:3-5 that we can have hope when everything looks hopeless because we are a people of hope.
Romans 5:3-5 (NRSV) And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.
So how do we sustain hope in a crisis?
The word of God is evident; we must rely on God’s presence. Rejoicing in a crisis does not mean celebrating when bad news comes. But it does mean we can believe God is doing a redemptive work, meaning that He does waste a hurt or disappointment.
He is using our crisis to conform us into the image of Christ; second, we can rely on God’s grace. In 2 Corinthians 12:7 (ESV), Paul is one man who could have boasted about his education. and the fact that he was a Roman with privileges. But God allowed Paul to be harassed by a thorn in his flesh. A thorn that would keep Paul from boasting and becoming conceited. God’s response to Paul’s request was, “my grace is sufficient.”
Thus, in our current situations, God is saying that His grace is sufficient. Even when we are weak, hurt, or wounded, or when we say, “this is too much to handle.” Or, we say, “if it’s not one thing, it’s another.” Yet, through the power of the Holy Spirit, God is making us stronger and bolder than we’ve ever had to be.
Lastly, we rely on God’s power. The apostle Paul says in
2 Corinthians 12:9b (ESV), “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of weakness so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” -Whatever the weakness.
For You and Me
In a crisis, there can be a turning point for the better. The greater the attack against us, the more powerful Christ becomes in us. But we have to rely on His presence, His provision, and His power.
I hope and pray these words strengthen and help you sustain hope in season and out of season.
Merriam-Webster Collegiate Definition – https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/
Romans 12: English Standard Version (ESV)
Romans 5:3-5 (NRS)
Eddie Mae Sims Bio
Eddie Mae Sims was born in Shreveport Louisiana in 1942. My family moved to Los Angeles in 1952.
Eddie Mae has been married to John Sims for sixty-two years. They have seven children, twelve grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. Eddie Mae Sims worked for Compton Unified School District for twenty-six years. She attended Compton Community College and in 2004 she received her certificate in child development. After completing her studies she worked as a pre-school teacher for fourteen years. She is now retired and loves crossword puzzles and watching old black and white movies.
Posted in: 2022-Sustaining HOPE Project