Don’t be an optimist

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Optimism hopes for the best without any guarantee of its arriving and is often no more than whistling in the dark. Christian hope, by contrast, is faith looking ahead to the fulfillment of the promises of God … Optimism is a wish without warrant; Christian hope is a certainty, guaranteed by God himself. Optimism reflects ignorance as to whether good things will ever actually come. Christian hope expresses knowledge that every day of his life, and every moment beyond it, the believer can say with truth, on the basis of God’s own commitment, that the best is yet to come. (J.I. Packer)

Now faith means putting our full confidence in the things we hope for, it means being certain of things we cannot see. It was this kind of faith that won their reputation for the saints of old. And it is after all only by faith that our minds accept as fact that the whole scheme of time and space was created by God’s command — that the world which we can see has come into being through principles which are invisible. (Hebrews 11:1-3)

Dear Christ-follower, banish whistling-in-the-dark optimism. Vanquish self-wrought and self-sustained optimistic wistfulness. For your hope is not a mere wish. Your hope, rather, is certain. You get to rest every day of your life — not because of your own precarious performance, but because of God’s unswerving commitment to you — on the steady and sure truth that the best is yet to come.

You’ve put your trust in the One who cannot lie. And He promises that someday you’ll experience the never-ending joy of being with Him in heaven. That means that, even now, you’re not relegated to the sad position of having to settle for mere optimism. You, because you love Jesus, have hope. The kind of hope that won’t disappoint you. The kind that is certain, even though you cannot now see it.

So no need for worldly optimism.  Instead, full confidence is yours. Full confidence that the best is yet to come, and that God, who commanded into existence the whole scheme of time and space, holds your future in loving hands.

Dear Christian, don’t be an optimist. Be hope-full.

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About Jill

I'm a wife, mom to three beautiful children, and currently work at two jobs for which I'm very grateful -- part-time at my kids' school, and as children's ministry director at Redeemer PCA in Athens, GA, a place our family treasures as our church home. It's been thirty years since the Lord saved me, and to this day I'm astounded at His steadfast love shed upon unfaithful me. My hope would be that I might speak and write in ways God would use to soften hearts toward Him, that we would together be enamored by the glorious beauty of Jesus and awakened to His love unimagined. Thanks so much for reading!
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