Steadfast in Faith, Hope and Love
Updated: Jul 24, 2021
It has been a while. I pray that all of you are keeping safe and well, especially during such a crazy time.
To be frank, these few weeks have been rough. The past week, it has been really tough. I am sure it was not just for me, but for the nation. The shock, the confusion, the fear, the disappointment, and the heartache. At this point, I want to state that it is okay and in fact, normal to feel all these emotions. What is important is to start naming these feelings. I am still in the midst of processing/ making sense of things. I wish I have the magical power to make all things alright or the wisdom to make full sense of things. Unfortunately, I do not.
However, I know the One who is all knowing, all powerful and all loving. While I honestly cannot fully understand why my Abba Father allow for such things to happen, I choose to trust that He is sovereign over all things. It does not mean that it is okay for all these to happen. In fact, it is NOT okay and it should NEVER be okay. In such circumstances, it is not okay to be not okay. It is not what He has originally designed for His creation to be. I choose to believe and hope that He is in the midst of restoring what He had intended. Words cannot express all that I am feeling and thinking. I pray that the Holy Spirit will minister to you as He comforted me when I called out to Him in my lowest moments.
I am reminded of a recent study I did on Hebrews 10:19-25.
Let us remain steadfast in faith by drawing close to God through the finished work of Christ, remain steadfast in hope by trusting in the character of Christ, and remain steadfast in love by encouraging each other as the Day of the Lord approaches. Let us persevere and spur each other on even when it gets tiring.
A little elaboration on the study
The Full Assurance of Faith (Hebrews 10:19-25) 19 Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, 20 by the new and living way that he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
Background of Hebrews
According to the NIV Biblical Theology Study Bible, the background of such exhortations must have been the audience’s need to continue enduring through persecution and the trials of life. Nonetheless, the author reminds them of their past faithfulness and communal love in the midst of persecution (10:32-34). He encourages their faithfulness by careful exposition of the OT in light of the revelation in Jesus Christ.
It was a call for Christians to endure and remain faithful in spite of adversity. They can and they must hold firmly to their faith, that which is anchored in the person and work of Jesus Christ!
May I suggest 3 ways we can perhaps live in a way that reflects what Jesus has done, especially during times of adversity:
Steadfast in Faith (v. 22) In the finished work of Christ, we can confidently come into His presence. In the finished work of Christ, we are able to find mercy and grace. What a privilege it is for us as believers to be able to confidently draw near to the throne of power, grace and mercy because of what the ultimate High Priest has done on the cross. In the times of adversity, may we choose to draw close to God, to call upon Him with the unwavering confidence and assurance in God’s sovereignty and power. That, in Him “we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need" (Heb 4:16).
Steadfast in Hope (v. 23) According to John Piper, "Biblical hope is a confident expectation and desire for something good in the future. Biblical hope not only desires something good for the future — it expects it to happen. And it not only expects it to happen — it is confident that it will happen." I like how Audrey has put it, "hope is looking expectantly towards the future based on our faith in God in the present and His faithfulness in the past." The hope that one day Jesus will come again, everything will be made new again. The hope that there will be no more suffering, and no more pain. The hope that is rooted in God and in His character.
Steadfast in Love (v.24-25) For me, love is an expression of faith and hope. Hence, a way to love is by encouraging one another in faith and hope. The sad reality is that things ain't gonna get better as the Day approaches. Sometimes, it can get more difficult, more disheartening. It is especially so since things will not be getting better, let us encourage each other. While we are unable to meet physically now, I thank God for the technology for us to still be able to connect with each other even though it may not be the best form of connection. May I suggest the focus here is to encourage one another in this faith journey, to remind each other of the Lord’s faithfulness and our hope in Christ. We can never walk alone. We need the community to spur us on.
It is my prayer that we will remain steadfast in faith by drawing close to God through the finished work of Christ, remain steadfast in hope by trusting in the character of Christ, and remain steadfast in love by encouraging each other as the Day of the Lord approaches. May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage our hearts and strengthen us in every good deed and word (2 Thess 2:16-17).
Please feel free to connect with me if there’s anything I can be praying with you or journeying with you. 💕