Hope Deferred

SCRIPTURE:  “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.” Prov. 13:12 (NKJV)
    In God’s word there’s a “league of extraordinary waiters!”  Sounds like a new restaurant reality show, doesn’t it?  Just like the “hall of faith” in Hebrews, chapter 11, peppered throughout Scriptures are people who can teach us, if we search them out, what perspective best serves and glorifies our Lord while we’re waiting for a breakthrough in uncomfortable or adverse circumstances.  Recently, I zeroed in on Hannah, the mother of the great Old Testament prophet, Samuel.  Although she felt rejected and was embittered over having a closed womb, we’re told that her focus at some point shifted from a “woe-is-me-because-of-my-unchanging-circumstance,” to one of focusing upon God.  If we know nothing else about Hannah, we know that she was honest before the sovereign God with her petition, as we’re told in 1 Sam. 1:12-16.
   You’ve heard it said that it’s not the size of our faith, but its object (i.e., God Himself) which is paramount; He honors even “mustard seed” faith, says Matt. 17:20.  Even though we see that Hannah’s deferred hope had led her to experience some sickness of heart, the fact that she had a degree of faith was enough to effect a change in her situation.  She apparently believed that “without faith it is impossible to please Him” and that God is a “rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” (Heb. 11:6)  Hannah did not deny her emotional weariness or anguish when queried by the likes of Eli the priest (1Sam. 1:15, 16).  Instead, she prayed fervently and in faith, committing the matter wholly to her God.  Undoubtedly, Hannah’s faith victory was preceded by her devotion and obedience to God, a heart attitude which she passed on to her son, Samuel.

   So for what are you waiting on God today?  For a prodigal child to receive Christ and begin worshiping and serving Him in spirit and in truth?  For God’s choice of a good spouse?  For the next “season” of life, once the nest is finally emptied?  For an improvement in your financial circumstances?  God wants us to persevere in trusting Him, despite how things may appear.  (2 Cor. 5:7 remains in the Book)!  He would have us seek His wisdom, guidance, and strength, and most of all, an intensified experience of His presence, through service and worship, while we wait.  He would have us to, like Hannah in the wake of her fervent prayer in 1 Sam. 1:18, commit our petitions to Him, believing that they’ve been answered—before we even see tangible results.  This is how we mature in our faith in Christ.

Dear Abba, from time to time we need a special personal revival from You to run further, to “mount up with wings like eagles,” and to persevere in completing what You’ve called us to do-- as though seeing that which is presently not visible on the horizon of our lives.  Help us to remember that faithful are You who promised, who will also bring it (whatsoever is in keeping with Your perfect will) to pass. Thank You, in Jesus’ name, Amen!
By Sis Denise Diggs


Paula - January 23rd, 2023 at 9:02am

Amen Sis. Denise, hope deferred does cause us to wait patiently on the Lord. Sometimes it seems like the thing you hope for will never come to pass, but we trust in God who knows! Thanks for that reminder and encouragement.

Wendy - January 23rd, 2023 at 12:03pm

Amen & Amen! Sis Denise Thank you. When we place our hope in Christ alone, we won’t be disappointed for He is a strong and trustworthy, anchor for our souls….

Novella D Carpenter - January 25th, 2023 at 1:58am

Amen. Thanks for penning this devotion.

McNeal & Debora - January 27th, 2023 at 6:50am

Amen! Hannah's example is an encouragement for us all. 'Hope deferred' is indeed the rule, rather than the exception, as we experience life on earth. Oh, but one day... Hallelujah!






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