Got Hope?

 

Are you worried? Are you stressed? Are you under pressure? It only makes it more difficult when we can carry the world in a cell phone today. Our phones of today are like little computers. Today, 70 percent of the world's population has a smartphone. In fact, 42 percent of Americans in 2010 said they couldn't live without their cell phones. Two-thirds of Americans sleep with their cell phones next to their beds. No wonder we are stressed out.

If you have a troubled heart, there is a solution! This solution is 2,000 years old, and it is from the Creator of the universe. These are the words of Jesus to his disciples: "Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father's house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am (John 14:1-3 NIV).

The disciples were stressed because Jesus had just revealed who his betrayer was: Judas Iscariot. Then Jesus told them that Simon Peter was going to deny him three times. Then he dropped the bombshell when he said we was going to leave them. Their world, as they knew it, was ending. What they didn't understand was that Jesus was leaving them to die on a cross and bear their sin and our sin and then rise again from the dead.

So why shouldn't our hearts be troubled or afraid? Because we should believe what God says in his Word, the Bible. Jesus said, "Believe also in me. In the original language, this is a command. Everyone believes in someone or something. Even the people who say they are not believers are, in effect, believers. Maybe they believe in themselves, maybe they believe in money, maybe they believe in government, or maybe they believe in technology. But when that final day comes, those people or things won't save them.

Shortly before he died, Steve Jobs said, "I'm about fifty-fifty on believing in God. I like to think that something survives after you die. ¦ But, on the other hand, perhaps it's like an on-off switch. Click! And you're gone. Is that what you believe? "Click! And you're gone?  Many people grow up thinking that exact thing! They don't really believe there is a God, for the most part. They simply believe that when you die, you're gone. You stop thinking, you stop existing. For many people that thought keeps them awake at night!  But it isn't true. When you die, yes, in one sense you are gone. Yes, your body is laid in the ground, but your soul lives on in the afterlife.

It all depends on what your destination is. There once was a fellow who was walking through a cemetery and saw a tombstone inscribed with these words: "Pause now, stranger, when you pass by. As you are now, so once was I. As I am now, so you shall be. So prepare for death and follow me. The man was overheard to say, "To follow you is not my intent until I know which way you went.

Death knocks at every door. It is no respecter of persons. Everyone will die. The statistics on death are quite impressive: one out of every one person will die. The Bible says, "People are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment (Hebrews 9:27 NIV).

You get to decide what you will do with this life. You get to decide where you will spend the afterlife. And there are only two choices: heaven and hell. The last thing God wants is for any person uniquely made in His image to spend an eternity in the place called hell. Hell was not made for people. According to Jesus, it was made for the devil and his angels. God wants each of us in heaven. That is why he sent His son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins so we don't have to go to this place.

Jesus told his disciples, "Believe also in me. He was saying, "Take me at my word. For many people the hard cold truth is that it isn't about getting through the week or getting through the day. It isn't even about getting through the hour. It's about getting through the next 15 minutes! The challenge for all of us is to put this teaching to the test. We are to trust in God when times are hard. Will God come through for you? He will! Jesus says, "Trust in me. Believe in my word.

The struggle is real!  Maybe you've recently had a loved one die. Maybe you've recently received bad news from a doctor. Maybe you're facing struggles at home. Maybe your marriage is falling apart or your finances are a real mess. You feel helpless. You feel hopeless.

It's been said that man can live 40 days without food, three days without water, about eight minutes without air, but only one second without hope. Have you lost your hope today? If so, then know that you can always find and place you're hope in real relationship with Jesus Christ. 

Here at First Christian this is what we truly believe!  Our God is the God who makes the impossible possible!  Our God is the God of second chances!  We extend an invitation to you to come and visit with us, to find out for yourself the truly amazing ability of God to turn everything around and give you a hope that can be found nowhere else!