Hope Again

Tim Jackson —  October 26, 2012 — 9 Comments

Last night I had the privilege of listening to sports legend Rocky Bleier. Because I grew up as a kid in Central Pennsylvania in the 1970s, I felt compelled to hear Rocky speak.

The lackluster Steelers had been at the bottom of the barrel for the preceding 40 years of professional football, but in the 70s they were finally coming into their own and becoming the dominant powerhouse team in the NFL. Rocky was part of the backfield trio of players—Terry Bradshaw, Franco Harris, and Rocky Bleier—who won 4 Superbowls that decade.

What impressed me last evening had little to do with football. What was striking was how this man, now in his seventh decade, displayed so much exuberance for life. Yes, we heard stories of gridiron challenges, and they were great. But what quickly became apparent was that his life wasn’t just about football and reliving the glory days. That’s one aspect of his story, but not the whole story, and certainly not the main part of his story.

The word that I never expected to hear as the theme of his talk was “hope.” Rocky said, “That’s what football is all about . . . hope.” Hope for a good game, no injuries and, yes, for a win. Hope to do better in the next game. Hope to make the playoffs. Hope to win a Superbowl some day. For players and fans alike, it’s all about hope.

I’d never thought about it that way. And that reminded me of Isaiah’s words about hope: “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:30-31 NIV).

We all need hope. We can’t live without it. Hope is as essential as the air we breath, especially when we feel beaten up by life, are weary of living, and catch ourselves just stumbling along trying to survive.

But that also raises a few questions: Where’s our hope? What are we hoping for? Or, even more penetrating, who is our hope in? Is my hope in me? You? Or in Someone bigger who can make what we hope for a reality? I’m banking on the latter. How about you?

Where’s your hope? Let me hear from you.

Tim Jackson

Posts Google+

Tim Jackson is married to his college sweetheart, Cole. They have 3 adult children. Tim is the producer for the HelpForMyLife.org website, writes Discover Series booklets on a variety of counseling issues and hosts webinars for RBC Ministries. He's also the founder and president of Still Waters Counseling & Equipping Ministries, PC, a local counseling practice serving individuals, couples and families. When not in the office, you will probably find him up a tree with a bow, in a duck blind or fly fishing on one of Michigan's many rivers.

9 responses to Hope Again

  1. Nāʻilima Gaison October 30, 2012 at 8:38 am

    At this very moment in time, 2:20am to be exact,..10/30/12. I have been tossing and turning on my bed. Thinking about many things especially of the bills that have to be paid but, how? I have a fixed amount of money (which is never enough) and I need to pay so many things. I applied for a loan and was declined today. This has been keeping me on edge at work and in other areas of my life. As I laid here with so many things running thru my mind, the thought of my Daily Bread popped in and I decided to take a look on what I could do to help me ease my mind and I found Help For My Life and saw your discussion on HOPE. I believe God has a plan for everyone and that he keeps us and guides us daily. With my deepest HOPE, I pray that my finances get better and becomes less stressful and that things work out for the good in my life. I give all my burdens and care to You Dear Heavenly Father and that you place your hands upon me and my family in this time of need. Forgive me of my sins and fill me with the holy spirit. Protect and guide me in my daily spiritual walk. In this I pray, amen.

    Tim, thank you so much for helping me release the negative attitude and help keep my HOPES and dreams alive and well with our Heavenly Father at the helm. God bless you and yours. Aloha

  2. Na’lliam,

    I’m thrilled that God led you to reach out to us even at 2:20am! It’s been my experience that when I’ve exhausted all my efforts to make my life work out as I think it should (notice lots of “I’s” in there), it’s those times of desperation that drive me to reach out and cling to God in ways I normally don’t. Ironically, He’s the only One we can cling to. And He delights to save us. The struggles are hard, but our God has promised to sustain us through the storm, not preserve us from it. I pray you find Him to be your Rock of refuge to cling to (Ps. 31:3) and remember: “Be strong and take heart (i.e. courage), all you who hope in the Lord” (Ps. 31:24).

  3. I thank you for bringing this article on hope, and I am now more convinced that in Christ lies all our hopes and that only God can help us through trying times, he is the Rock on which we should stand on.

  4. I just subsribed to the daily bread online. I read it daily in my life for a few years. God brought the only man back into my life that I have ever loved. We got married, had a miracle son and after battling with his alcoholism and drug abuse and me not understanding…. I filed for divorce thought if he was on his on he would fight for our family because we had GOD everday in our lives then somewhere that was lost as so our relationship we married in 2006 and have been divorced since March of 2011. I have done many things I regret as well but always encouraged him to get help thus he did not and our family shattered. Family without GOD is so easily destroyed. Thankfully my son and I are making it by the GRACE of GOD. My ex husband asked for my forgivness in June this year I thought it was a plea for myself and my son being the last place he could turn. I have written him at the last known address but heard nothing. The interesting part of what I am typing is he is in Grand Rapids where The Daily Bread is where I subscribed. Before we married we were apart….he was incarcerated we read the Daily Bread everyday at the same time….I pray he is ok and GOD’S WILL BE DONE in our lives. We are not promised tomorrow my son needs his dad and I need to tell him some things but most that I am and always be his wife in my heart. If Gods will I pray we are back as a family again even all the pain and suffering LOVE IS THE GREATEST gift. Thank YOU!

  5. Karen,
    I’m saddened by the difficult struggles that you and your son are experiencing. Being in a relationship with a man who battles addictions to alcohol and drugs that spill over into abuse of you is painful. Love may cover a multitude of sins but it can’t prevent someone you love from doing harm to himself or you. Love also requires that you draw truth boundaries to protect yourself and your son from his harm. May God encourage and strengthen you today as you seek to become all the woman and mother that He’s calling you to be.

  6. Just read the article on hope. My wife and I are separated, but we communicate daily and I am seeing a counselor. We both are going thru much, from finances to etc., the entire spectrum of emotion. I at time lose hope as well as she does. Through this I have drawn closer to the Lord and His word. Hope is found in Him although at times we both feel hopeless. We have a sure foundation of hope found only in Christ.

  7. Joe,

    You are so right. Our only hope is in the God who restores hearts and relationships. Don’t give up. It may take a while. Good things usually do. But they are worth all the blood, sweat and tears we invest in them. In the process, God changes who we are and that increases our potential to love more deeply than we ever thought possible. So hang in there. Jesus will see you through.

  8. Karen, thank you for your words .

    I am in a dark place at the moment. My faith is weak.
    Thank you for giving me a guiding light.
    Thank you too, Joe

  9. For the past two years i’ve been struggling with what God has been trying to tell me. I know he allows me to make my own decisions, but he has never forsaking me. Earlier today I was going to respond, but it would have probablity looking for pity. Based on my decsions I’ve love my family, friends, respect and dignaity. I have two beutiful daughters and one of them doesn’t want to speak with me, let alone see me. I can understand why based on the truth that I hurt her mom and had a child with another women.

    Well needless to say that relastionship was based on lies and we are not longer together, actually since that affair things have never been the same. It’s taken me three years to earn my mothers trust back and we are still building. This christmas is going to be a rough one becasue the ones that i love and miss will probably not be around, but I do have the love of my yougest daugher. she brightend up my day. after long prayer, and bible study I have to learn to forgive my self, and have hope that both my asking for forgiveness and know the lord will work things out in his time will both heal and prevail.

Leave a Reply