Hurting for Good?: Why So Hopeful?

“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” (1 Peter 3:15-16)

How can you possibly be loving your life? I don’t understand, with all you’re going through, how you could call this a “good day?” Why don’t you just stop talking about Jesus? Be done with Him and move on. What has being a Jesus-follower done for you? Why are you still so hopeful?

hurting_350Those are the kinds of questions you should expect, according to Peter. Did you notice that he just expects, assumes, anticipates a few things here? Christians who make Christ first in their hearts will be hopeful. When the hard times come, people will notice that Christ-as-Lord Christians are hopeful. They will see joy and purpose where they would expect to see sorrow and defeat. Eventually, someone will ask “why?”

Then what? The command here is, “Always be prepared.” How? Ask yourself the question, “Why are you so hopeful?” and come up with a short, truthful, gentle, and respectful answer. Hint: It has something to do with what you’re hoping for.

Think: What are you hoping for? What could possibly happen to you in this life that would change that?

Pray: Ask God to help you to set apart Christ as Lord in your heart today.

Do: Write a paragraph answering the question, “How can you be so hopeful right now?”