Hope grows strong through testing
“Never lose hope. Storms make people stronger and never last forever.” – (Roy. T. Bennett )
I’m sure you will agree with me that most of us, if not all of us will experience hopelessness.
But you don’t have to succumb to it
Even so, sometimes we feel as if we are losing this age-old battle
I want to talk about Exalting in tribulation
Just as faith grows through testing in a similar way our hope is increased and matured as we go through various trials and tests
What happens when our hope is tested? The answer to the question is in:
Romans 5:1-5 (NIV)
Verse 1-2 – Therefore having been justified by faith (justified means acquitted; made righteous), we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the Glory of God.
Paul says that we “Exult in hope of the glory of God.”
The word *Exult means to rejoice, to be very confident
*Jubel / juig
Notice: That it is hope that produces that joy and confidence
But then Paul says:
Romans 5:3a – And not only this but we also exult in our *tribulations.
We can understand to exult in hope but how do we exult in tribulations and testing?
Why would we exult in our tribulations?
Paul goes on to explain:
Romans 5: 3b-5 – “Knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance, and perseverance proven character, and proven character hope, and hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”
Notice: The progression that leads to hope
When we come into tribulation if we hold on to our faith, then we hold onto our hope.
What tribulation does in us to is to initiate a process which is essential for the building of Christian Character.
The end result is that through tribulation God gives us a strong, stable, confident hope.
You see hope has to be tested by tribulation in order to be proved genuine and become strong.
Notice the progression: Tribulation produces perseverance, perseverance produces proven character and proven character produces hope that is not disappointed.
There is only one way to learn perseverance - but to persevere. (Liking learning to ride a bike, know all the theory but to learn you must ride.)
When we come into tribulation (and we surly will) we need to hold on to one important truth: The trial we are facing God is allowing – It’s helping us.
God is permitting us to go through this particular trial
Because it’s the only way to produce what is needed in us for that – strong, confident, radiant, unshakable HOPE.
(Tribulation produces perseverance. So what does perseverance produce?)
Perseverance produces proven character.
The person who has been through trials and tribulations and comes out victorious has proven character
Romans 8:37 (NIV) – We are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
What does it mean to be “more than conquerors?”
It’s when you come out of tribulation with more than when you went in it. You gain a Victory
That’s how it is when we persevere in tribulation – we come out with proven character
Proven character is essential because it establishes our hope
It’s important to know, we had the hope of the glory of God before our trial started. (Hebrews 6:19 We have this hope)
But when we come out of it, we have an altogether different degree of hope
The bible says that his hope does not disappoint us
It opens us up for the fullness of God’s love
This is all possible by the power of the Holy Spirit
Romans 15:13 (NKJV)- Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Please notice: It is by the power of the Holy Spirit – we cannot do this on our own.
The Spirit of God is the only agent who can minister this kind of victorious hope in our lives.
May we mature in Hope.