Wisdom and songs – Hope

Welcome, to the beginning of February blogs! I want to begin by sharing the message I shared with my church family on Sunday. We have started this series on wisdom and it being put into a song. I decided on Proverbs 11v7, which looks at hope placed in man. The song which I picked was Psalm 62, which highlights what a steadfast hope in the Lord looks like. I have compared and contrasted them throughout. I hope you will enjoy it and it will encourage you in your faith. Have a blessed week. Love, Victoria. xx

Hope placed in mortals die with them, all the promises of their power comes to nothing. (Proverbs 11v7)

Hope, what we have our hope in is essential for how we choose to live. Where our hope is found will impact all the decisions we make.

Let us not deny it is easier to put our hope in people. Especially when they are of the same worldview or they offer us the material possessions we desire.

How many of us know the disappointment of having put our hope in a person/people only for them not to meet our expectations?

How many of us know the burden of someone who has placed their hope in us and trying to meet their expectation?

People are so limited in what they can do. There is not an unlimited supply to their power. This Proverb reminds us of the fragility of human life, how hope placed in people is fragile. When we place our hope in people, we are never truly fulfilled because we will be disappointed. It leads us to put unreasonable demands on people, which they could never fulfil. It leads us to criticize and diminish people as we look to someone else who will fulfil our expectations better.

In relation to this Proverb, I want us to look at Psalm 62. Psalm 62 highlights David’s steadfast hope in the Lord, it speaks of circumstances not shaking his hope and faith in God. When we put our hope in God, we know what he has to offer, all that He is and all He can do; He offers to us.

I want to look at what a steadfast hope in the Lord means because we are warned about placing our hope in people. If we cannot put hope in people, then what does it look like to put our hope in God.

Hope placed in God is unshakeable.

David was in the midst of a tough situation. Instead of questioning God or complaining about the situation; he allows himself to be at peace and find rest in the Lord’s presence.

Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress. I will never be shaken. (v1-2)

How many of us when we are struggling, run first to God? If our hope is placed in God, He should be the first place we run to.

Many of us do not, we run to people first and we tend to run to the people who we believe can fix it all and they make us feel good within the process. I am not saying, we do not need peoples help it is better to do life with people. How many of us know of a situation we have been facing and we have run straight to someone, to complain or get help and it has made the situation 10x worse?

David was not alone in his situation he could have found council in someone. Instead, David was someone who had hope and faith in the Lord. David did not get riled up about his situation, but he wanted to go straight into the presence of God.

David knew the Lord and knew his situation could not shake his unshakeable God, so David would not be shaken.

Hope placed in God gives strength in all circumstances.

God does not only allow us to not be shaken by our circumstance; but we can have hope in Him, that He will see us through our circumstance.

David stated what he was facing:

How long will you assault me? Would all of you throw me down this leaning wall, this tottering fence? Surely they intend to topple me from my lofty place; they take delight in lies. With their mouth they bless but in their hearts they curse. (v3-4)

David knew difficulties and challenges in his life. From when he was a young shepherd boy facing Goliath, when he had to go into hiding when Saul wanted him dead, to the many challenges he faced as the King. David knew the faithfulness of God through all his highs and lows, David knew hope could be found in the strength of the Lord. What he was facing now, God would seem him through it in one way or another.

Even in the midst of his circumstance he encourages people to have the same hope in the Lord.

Trust in him at all times; you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. (v8)

You have enough history with the Lord, to know he will get you to the other side.’ Robert Madu.

Is our hope placed in a God who will see us through all the highs and lows of life, or do we continue to depend on our own strength to figure out our problems?

Hope placed in God is intimate.

I was flicking through a commentary on this psalm and came across this thought which perfectly sums up David’s hope in the Lord, in reference to v5-7 which are a similar repetition of v1-2.

Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honour depend on God; he is my mighty rock my refuge.

he is not content to know that the Lord is all these things; he acts in faith towards him, and lays claim to him under every character.’ Spurgeon.

David’s hope is found in the Lord, as he continues to know the Lord he is filled with hope. He doesn’t need to look for that fulfilment anywhere else. Everything that is important for David’s life he knows the Lord gives to him. Everything David needs to face life can be found in God.

Even in a situation which could have portrayed God as being unfaithful, David claimed the character of God over the situation.

Do we have this hope in the Lord? Do we desire and know, that everything we need can be found in the Lord?

Or are we going to keep looking to people, who are limited in what they can do for us? Do we desire to be so dependent on a person, that we make them like a godlike figure in our life? Truly that will be a heavy burden for someone to carry.

Hope placed in God reminds us how much we need him.

Last year especially/ over the years of our life we have seen things we thought we had such a firm grip on come to nothing. It leads to disappointment, grief, and a need to rebuild.

Surely the lowborn are but a breath, the highborn are but a lie. If weighed on a balance they are nothing; together they are only a breath. Do not trust in extortion or put vain hope in stolen goods; though your riches increase do not set your heart on them. (v9-10)

The certainties we depend on in life whether they are people or material goods are all perishable. Easy to put our hope in because they are things we can hold and maintain but we are warned not to set our hearts on them.

But a breath, shows the reality of how life works. It is a stark reminder but one which helps us to look beyond people and material goods to the true hope which is God.

One thing God has spoken, two things I have heard; “Power belongs to you, God, and with you is unfailing love; and “You reward everyone according to what they have done.”  (v11-12)

These verses remind us of how we need to depend on God and the authority God has. He is a God from which abundance flows, and he does not leave us unfulfilled.

Good desires for us to know him and to walk with him. He has blessed us with the Holy Spirit who continues to lead us and guide us through life. He wants us to hope and trust in Him because as found in Jesus ‘He is the way, the truth and the life.’

There will always be people who we can find hope in because there are people who do amazing and beautiful things. When they become the sole reason for our hope, our lives then become chained to their success and failure.

May we today know a steadfast hope in the Lord. The hope David had in the Lord was not something which is unattainable, but it comes by spending time and surrendering to the Lord. It comes by trusting and allowing the Lord to be present in all our circumstances.

Application

Do not allow your disappointment in people to distort your hope in God. God makes no fake promises and is faithful to all his promises. You can put all your hope in our faithful and good God.

Hope placed in mortals die with them, all the promises of their power comes to nothing. (Proverbs 11v7)

We have looked at hope placed in God vs hope placed in man. Where will we choose to put our hope today?

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