Thanks for joining me for another publication of “The Blue Ridge Christian News” and “The Inspiring Word”.
Over the past couple of months, our world has experienced tremendous grief and heartache. The COVID Virus, natural disasters, violence, and terrorism have inflicted a great deal of pain and suffering on our world, nation, family, and neighbors. That is only part of what is on my heart this month. You see as a bi-vocational minister working a full-time job with the NC prison system I spend almost every day in the presence of men and women on both sides of the prison bars. Then, there is my work as a minister with the homeless. I meet countless people every week, they all have concerns, questions, even fears and they all are looking for answers. We can say, I believe truthfully, occasionally we all find ourselves searching for HOPE!
Maybe you find yourself struggling with addiction or abuse, maybe it is sexual immorality, anger, prejudice, or loneliness. Each one of us from time to time finds ourselves searching for HOPE. These examples are only a few and do not scratch the surface of our struggles.
This month I want to address one of if not America’s single largest struggle, our lack of spiritual HOPE. We live in a day where we are told the only acceptable spiritual journey is one that coexists with all others. Regardless of where you place your faith its fine and correct if it doesn’t offend anyone else. That may look good on paper and for a moment give a warm fuzzy feeling, but it doesn’t provide any hope! For you and me to have spiritual hope we must have authority in our life. To say there is nothing absolute is an absolute! Where is hope found within an empty absolute? We require the authority of HOPE! This hope exists, please read on.
Many people today know about Jesus, maybe they have been raised in the church and followed in the footsteps of their parents, grandparents, and other role models. Maybe they have memorized their Bible. Maybe they give to countless charities. Yet, they like the multitudes who have never heard of Jesus Christ lack spiritual hope because they have never entered a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Please understand, Christianity is not a membership it’s a relationship that leads to a fellowship. This relationship with Jesus Christ is the spiritual hope that is needed in America. We need fewer social media and more personal fellowship; first with Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, then with fellow born again believers in the body of Christ. Without a genuine relationship with Christ, we find ourselves vulnerable to subtle yet powerful attacks from Satan. If you find yourself smirking right now, I would like to make a bold and sincere statement. You have a soul and you will move from this life to an eternal existence. There are only two options, eternal life (heaven) or eternal death (hell), where there will be no end to the suffering. We cannot decide to turn over a new leaf, we can’t say I’m going to be a better person and have spiritual hope. We must submit to Jesus. Jesus said in John 3:16-17 “John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (17) For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” Why did Jesus come to save and not condemn? Yes, verse 16 emphasizes love but there is a much deeper truth here. We were already condemned because of sin! The apostle Paul tells us in Romans 5:18 “Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.” The offense of one came in the fall of man in the garden of Eden and the righteousness of one comes through Jesus Christ! He is our spiritual HOPE. There is no other name under heaven by which we can be saved! God does not coexist with other deities; God does not negotiate or compromise. He has given us HOPE if we will take it and submit our lives to Him as obedient children to a Father. Don’t live in spiritual hopelessness, if God has broken your heart, wherever you are right now you can call upon Jesus and ask Him to save you! His HOPE is real and permanent and genuine. There is spiritual HOPE in Jesus Christ and only in HIM. For more information please contact me using the information given with this article.
Until we meet again either in print or in person May God Bless you is my Prayer!
Terry is a regional supply and conference preacher, and along with his wife Lori minister to the men, women, and children of McDowell Mission Ministries.