A Living Hope
When life doesn’t go as planned do we still have hope? Is our hope here or do we have a LIVING HOPE?
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you…” 1 Peter 1:3-4
Our family has recently moved to our ‘dream property’, consisting of a sweet, old, 1850 yellow farmhouse, and almost 8 acres of woods and meadows. While my dear husband, Mark, has been tirelessly working on restoring and updating the interior of the home, I have been busy outside, working with the girls to tame what has been neglected for many years and establish the beginnings of a family garden.
With all of this work comes much hope. Hope in what the garden can provide, hope in the comfort of our little home, hope in raising livestock someday, hope in the various family business opportunities…making the many plans, discussing ideas and possibilities. Reading through books and learning, that we might do things the proper way, and one day see the fruit of our labors.
“By the sweat of your face, you shall eat…”, God promises in His curse upon Adam (Gen. 3:19), and that is certainly true. I’ve grown to appreciate and admire the several dear sisters in my life who have flourishing gardens and can provide a winter’s worth of preserved, wholesome and home-grown food for their large families. This is a goal I aspire to, Lord willing☺ It has seemed quite the toil to clear the wild brush and ferns which have overtaken the property, amend the soil, and plant our simple four raised beds and a few scattered fruit and vegetable patches, here and there. Having returned to gardening after a few years break, I can certainly respect the work that goes into such wonderful provisions.
As I set out in the mornings, stepping through the dewy grass in the quiet cool of the day, I water the plants and very naturally drift into prayer. I pray over the success of the garden; I pray over my husband, that God would maintain him in his work and ministry and bless all the work of His hands; I pray over the children, starting new jobs, plans for the next school year, their relationships with friends, and that God would use them for His good purpose. I pray over my own relationships, my role as wife and mother, asking forgiveness over my failures, and guidance in my day-to-day.
Through all of this…hope. Praying in hope, toiling in hope, planning in hope. I can’t help but think of Proverbs 16:9, “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.” Which brings me to the importance of a LIVING HOPE.
Our plans, however, can and do fail. Plants, which we have grown from seedlings, will die or get eaten by deer. Sweet pullets, which we’ve raised so diligently from day-old chicks, will be, in a moment, snatched up by a fox. Our hopes and plans in this world will be crushed. We learn the hard way that we must hold onto things, ideas, and ambitions loosely…knowing that our circumstances can and do change.
Lately, our family has been investing much time by the bedside of my dear grandfather—a man who has lived a rich life has affected so many lives and has garnered so many stories, adventures, and experiences along the way. I’ve been pondering the blessing of ‘life’ as I never have before…but, more so, the ultimate hope, the living hope which lies just beyond. The living hope which He has promised for those who place their hope in Him.
While this life is an amazing blessing and gift, if our hope is in Christ, and what He has done for us by His work on the cross, we know that He, Himself, is preparing a place for us, that we might be with Him always (Jn 14:3). 1 Corinthians 2:9 reminds us, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.”
In life, we will suffer through many tears and trials. Things will not always go as we plan! There will be toil, hardships, frustrations, and failures of our flesh and our hearts…but, indeed, we are told that we can rejoice and that through Him and His great mercy, we have an inheritance that is “imperishable, undefiled, and unfading” (1 Peter 1:4). Praise God that we can look to our Living Hope! “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:8-9)
Diana Vojtasek is a child of God, wife to dear husband, Mark, for over 21 years, and homeschooling mother to four precious children: Sophia (19), Nathaniel (17), Helena (14), and Clara (11). Besides writing, Diana has a passion for the Lord and has served with her husband in the music ministry at their church for the past ten years. She loves hiking, camping with the family, and working on developing their hobby farm in Eastern Pennsylvania. Having a burden for young wives and mothers, Diana has co-led a Bible study for young wives at their church for five years, served as homeschool mentor at their co-op, and continues to seek opportunities to encourage while remaining keeper at home.
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