Like many of you, I gathered with loved ones last night for New Year’s Eve. We watched the celebration in Times Square in New York City as people rang in the new year, and we wished one another a Happy New Year.
I had spent much of the previous few days soaking myself in the wonderful atmosphere of the worship and teaching that was live-streamed from the OneThing conference at International House of Prayer. The theme of the conference was One Call, One Story, One Coming King. The worship and the messages were full of hope in the Coming One, and full of confidence that even in this dark age, because Jesus has come to be our Redeemer, our lives can shine with His light if we fix our eyes steadfastly on Him.
Meanwhile, in Times Square, a few moments after the New Years countdown, the camera cut to rocker Billy Joel who was belting out one of his hits. The song alludes to drug-fuelled “good times”, and includes these telling lines,
You may be right
I may be crazy
But it just may be a lunatic you’re looking for
As I listened to the crowd screaming out these words, I realized again how profoundly, eternally grateful I am that Jesus has opened my eyes to a hope that is substantial.
I will be spending a good part of the next couple of days working on a small project for my beloved daughter. She has a vision for her bedroom, and her vision involves me. She wants me to turn a space into her room into a built-in closet.
Because the space is already configured for a closet, it’s a fairly simple project. Still, I need to take appropriate care to build well. I need to measure, I need to plan, I need to count the cost. And I need to anchor the screws that go into the drywall so that they can hold the weight of daily use. Otherwise, Bethany’s hopes for this closet could come crashing down. It would not be a pretty scene.
I know what I want for 2014. I am building for eternity, and I want to build well. To build well, I need hope. So do you.
I can’t be content with an empty or flimsy hope. I need the real thing. I need the hope that comes from the God who raised Jesus Christ from the dead. I need a hope that is substantial – a hope that translates into God-birthed vision and purpose for my life.
Are you hoping for good things in 2014? Don’t place your hope in empty things that will only come crashing down. Be sure your hope is solidly anchored in the One who holds the future in his hands.