Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Hope vs. Faith

I have been asking God lately to increase my faith. One of my favorite scriptures is Hebrews 11:1 that says: Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation or title deed) of the things we hope for, being the proof of things we do not see and the conviction of their reality. (Amplified version). So, basically it is saying that Faith is TRULY believing that something we have prayed for is definitely going to happen...no doubt in our minds....it will occur...even though it hasn't happened yet. It is receiving a promise from God about something and having no doubt it will occur.

The Bible is filled with promises for every believer. There is a bunch of personal things that I'd like to see happen, too. The problem is, I realize that I live much more in the world of HOPE instead of FAITH. There is a fine line that must be crossed. I can hope for stuff all day, but it's faith that moves God.

So, how do I move from hope to faith? My pastor and cell leader have talked about this. Everything starts in prayer. I have to pray through my "hopes" until I hear God's voice (in prayer or in His word) promise me that that "hope" will be taken care of. Then I have to choose to believe that He will actually do it. Once I believe that, then I am in faith. I have the "title deed" to that promise, and I believe it will be done. Now I don't have to "worry" about it, because I know God WILL move...in HIS timing...without a doubt.

Now, that's hard. I can honestly say that I don't have a whole lot of those title deeds. I have a bunch of "hopes". I am asking God to enlarge my faith so that I can move out of the realm of hope and into the realm of faith. That takes work, too. I have to spend that consistent time with Him so that I can hear His voice and receive those promises that move my hopes into faith.

My favorite scripture is Luke 1:45 - Blessed is she who has believed what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished. (Elizabeth is singing to Mary...so the Bible actually does use "she", which I love.) Sounds like faith to me.

So, what do I believe the Lord has said to me WILL BE accomplished, and what do I just HOPE will be accomplished? Such a fine but imperative line to cross. Oh God, enlarge my faith so that Your will in my life can be accomplished!

On a different note, my husband helped Trella and Bruce move a uhaul full of stuff into their new house today! YEY!! I believe they were spending the night there tonight. I haven't seen the house yet, but I can't wait.




28 comments:

Lyndy said...

“I live much more in the world of HOPE instead of FAITH.”

Ruth, I can so relate to this. As you know, God has been challenging me to live by faith and it is so difficult. Several things that God has spoken to me are:

Our faith will be tested.
Unbelief will shut you out of your land of promise.
We must speak to the mountains in our lives in order for them to move.
We must believe what we say will take place and have no doubt in your heart.
One of the keys to keeping faith in your heart is to watch what you listen to, what you see and what you agree with. You have to make sure your mind is renewed to what the word of God says and not to people’s opinions.

All it does when you expose yourself to these things is destroy your faith. Then you have to start all over again to build faith. Guard your heart. Stay with things that bring life, hope and faith to your spirit.

I will be praying for you Ruth. We are on a journey and I pray it is a journey of victory for both of us.

Blessings, Lyndy

Betty said...

Ruth, I do know that God is faithful in all that He says He will do. First Peter 5:7 says, "Casting all of your care upon Him for He careth for you."

Thanks for coming by to visit with me and the sweet comment about Justin. I hope you can eat there. I think you would enjoy it.

Is the Trella that you mentioned the blogger? Are you related? My daughter is a blogger, also. Picketfence Mom listed on my blogroll......Betty

Susie said...

Ruth this is a beautiful post. I really needed to read it today. Waiting on the Lord for something you know he has promised you is what I am doing at this moment. I have spent the time in prayer and I'm waiting. This was so good!

Ruth said...

Lyndy, I think we must have the same pastor!! Everything you said was exact quotes from my pastor and leaders!!

Betty, yes that is Trella from Word of Truth. We aren't related, but we are very good friends. Our husbands grew up together, and we were all friends in college.

Susie, I'm glad this was helpful to you...as many times as your posts have helped me, I'm glad to return the favor! =o)

Penless Thoughts said...

Wonderful post. I think this is one of the hardest battles. Faith is always spoken of as "Now". Not God "will" answer my prayer - but God "has" answered my prayer. It has not yet manifested but it is done!! "Faith is the evidence of things not seen".

When we are speaking in the "will" happen it is always just hope. The faith is just knowing, that you know, and expecting to see it manifest any moment.

I was curious too if Trella is related to you.

Blessings,
Susan

Our Peculiar Life said...

Our pastor says "Hope is for tomorrow, faith is for today." But he also says we must have hope for faith to work. :-) I too live in the world of hope much too often. But I am joining you in receiving more title deeds!

Susan Kelly Skitt said...

One of my favorite chapters in the Bible is Hebrews 11. It's on my list of things to post about :)

I once heard a great definition about "hope". Evidentially it can be used as a nautical term meaning "Point of Destination". Gives a new meaning to the phrase "Our Hope is in the Lord" :)

Blessings and I hope to visit again.

Lizzie said...

Good post!Anyway, have a great summer Mrs.B!!!

Karen said...

Living by faith is an area where we are being super challenged these days! We just continue to immerse ourselves in His word.
I am so happy for Trella and her family! I can't wait to see pictures. As someone who has moved several times, I know that they are very grateful for your husband's help!

Betty said...

Thanks Ruth for the visit and comment....Betty

Lori B said...

I love this post. It is so inspirational.
I love that Hebrews 11:1 verse.

So glad that your husband could help Trella and her husband move. I hope all is going well.

You have a blessed weekend!

Christy said...

Wow. This really, really spoke to me. Thank you. I am so guilty of doing the same thing-I hope and wait but it is with the shadow of doubt that God will not work His Will for me, that I will somehow be let down... Because hoping means that there is still doubt.

Thank you for giving me this encouragement as well as something to think about!

Penless Thoughts said...

Ruth - I like my digital picture frame very much. That would be a great Father's Day gift!
Susan

~Ginger said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Your post was awesome. I think we all work to accomplish this goal. My biggest fight is against the faith snatcher. I believe to receive, but find myself later forgetting that I was strong and knew who my faith was secure in. Suddenly I realize that there is a theif on the prowl wanting to steal my faith and replace it with much doubt. When the doubt enters in my faith becomes hope...hmmmm.
I still have much to learn, but my God is BIG and I am eager :)

Emily said...

Hi Ruth - so sorry I haven't visited your blog before now! I am so glad I did, this post really spoke to me. Thank you for writing it, faith is something I really want/need to grow in too!

You have a lovely blog and sounds like you have a great family. Thank you for all your lovely comments on my blog. Blessings to you! :)

Trella said...

Ruth,
Hey! Surprise! I am at my sister's house, feeding her dog. They are at Disney World.
Wonderful post!
You can come and visit (unpack) anytime you would like:) Seriously, y'all can visit anytime. The kids and I will be home all week and I am sure they will love to see your kids. Just ignore the boxes. Tell Josh thanks so much. He was a huge help!! How did his trip go?
Well, I better go before Bruce thinks something has happened to me!
Love,
Trella

~Ginger said...

Just wanted you let you know that we had a great sermon on faith today! I thought about you and your blog. I was amazed at how I just learned of you yesterday. God really spoke to my heart today and I could see His hand when I thought of your post and all the wonderful comments left here.
Thanks again for sharing.

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Llamasmama said...

"I once heard a great definition about "hope". Evidentially it can be used as a nautical term meaning "Point of Destination". Gives a new meaning to the phrase "Our Hope is in the Lord""

This really spoke to me....If HOPE sets our direction, our destination, then FAITH is the wind in our sails to get us there.