Christian Hope

Jack Roeda

READ : 2 Corinthians 4:13-18

So we do not lose heart. (v. 16)

Scott Peck in The Road Less Traveled begins with a simple observation: Life is difficult. Every life, he says, is uphill. Yet when we run into difficulty, we ask, “Why . . . why me?” We protest as though we expected life to be trouble free.

Life is difficult. We know it. Paul knew it. Yet for this very reason he asserts: “So we do not lose heart,” and again later, “So we are always confident” (5:6), and yet again, “Yes, we do have confidence” (5:8). No matter how difficult the journey or steep the climb, Paul is confident that we will arrive home.

One writer defines despair as a “perverse anticipation of the nonfulfillment of hope.” He says despair is not a mood but an act of the will, a decision that the road we’re on is a dead-end, that the journey is fruitless.

Paul was acquainted with such despair (4:8-12), but he says we do not lose hope. His reasons for such hope are many, but consider this one: We have hope “because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus, and will bring us with you into his presence” (4:14). Christ’s resurrection is the clue that our journey will end not in darkness but in a great homecoming.

PRAYER

Gracious Lord, may we not lose heart, no matter the difficulty of the road. Amen.