Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.

One of my favorite passages is 1 Corinthians 13. But how it got relegated to weddings and Hallmark sappiness is one of Eden Lost’s greatest acts of pulling the wool over our eyes.

hope from CC1

And here I’ll step up on a short soap box. Context, world, context. Do you see the mess that the Corinthians had gotten themselves into? Have you read chapter 12, chapter 14, and the rest of the book and seen how very much they needed Patrick Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a Team and Cloud and Townsends’ Boundaries? They had bickering, comparing, having sex with anyone but their spouse, and jealousy down to an art form.

In the midst of this mess, it is hard for me to grasp that Paul would call a time out to get all mushy about love. He saw how they needed to get LOVE (a lesson we still need today), but he also wanted to offer faith and hope. Hope that though they were in a mess, it was not their final state. They could grow and be better than they were. Hope that Eden would be regained and this, this is not our best lives.

This is the dress rehearsal for the real show. Is the dress rehearsal as real as the “real” show? Yes, especially to those in the rehearsal. I don’t mean to imply that our lives now are not real or valid, they are. But our hope doesn’t lie in us getting it right.

And in Eden Regained we will know hope without the tinting of despair or doubt or brokenness. The slogan Keep Hope Alive resonated with many. What do we have without hope? Eden Lost.  This is as good as it gets, baby.

But when we are in Eden Regained, we won’t have to keep hope alive, hope will simply be alive without effort or assault.

I’ll admit I’m not sure where unanswered prayers fall when it comes to hope. Here I’m thinking of one individual I have prayed for years and I see no answers. None. I know prayer is a dance between complex situations, realities I don’t see or can’t grasp, and other people’s decisions. Yet over and over we are assured that God hears our prayers and cares about us.

And so I’ll keep praying and hoping.

Truth be told, I am drawn to hope like an annoying fly to light. My soul dances at the thought illnesses can be healed, relationships restored, a day off enjoyed, a Broncos victory or chance to watch hope infused episodes of The Biggest Loser.

Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.

Hope is going to last – forever. Amen and amen and amen.

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Linking today with Velvet Ashes: Hope

hope

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Leave A Comment

  1. Heather Steyn April 11, 2014 at 9:00 am - Reply

    Hi Amy, As always, I love to hear and read your thoughts. I have never subscribed to the unanswered prayers theory. I think all prayers are answered, they are just not always the answers we were hoping for or desiring for ourselves. I still think we have the right to petition God as to what it is we would like to have happen, but in His timing and grace and omniscience, He eventually reveals His plan. It might seem like a forever activity to us because as we all know God’s time and our time are completely different. It would be nice sometimes if He would give us a glimpse or a little hint of what may be to come, but I also think that sometimes patience is the lesson He is trying to teach. “Be still and know that I am God!” Of course, being still isn’t in your nature anymore than it is mine, my friend! : ) But continuing to hope is never a futile activity, nor do I believe it is relegated to the back behind love because without love we can’t have hope, nor peace, nor faith. They all have to work together in harmony.

  2. Elisa April 11, 2014 at 1:59 pm - Reply

    “We won’t have to keep hope alive. It will simply be alive without effort…” I’m a hope fly with you, friend. (Perhaps why we love the movies that others don’t: “People Like Us” “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close”, “About Time” etc. These are movies you have to wait for hope in. But when you wait you see the redemption and truth in what they are saying.)

    There are times when I get tired of flapping my Hope wings but ultimately it’s HIS LIGHT that keeps my wings going towards HIM, towards HOPE! :) But I have to say, I’m ready for HOPE to just BE and to turn in my wings. ;) I LOVE LOVE LOVE this post! :)

  3. Sarah Skinner April 11, 2014 at 3:11 pm - Reply

    1 Corinthians 13 is my favorite passage in the Bible. It made all things clear for me in life. It gave me direction. I memorized it and it has been a guide for me in difficult situations. Hope is not my strong point. Really. I’ve always been quick to lose hope. God keeps sending me more hope though. He provides for my weakness. A while back I noticed 1 Corinthians 12:31 “Now eagerly desire the greater gifts. And yet I will show you the most excellent way.” I agree with you…Love…although it is needed in marriages….it is meant for all of life. It is the most excellent way of living. Period. For everyone. With everyone. Faith. Hope. And Love.

  4. Malia April 12, 2014 at 7:49 am - Reply

    Amy, as soon as you said “context, world, context,” I knew we were friends.

    My favorite part in this (fantastic) post is when you emphasized that hope will come effortlessly when Eden is regained. The feeling of hope–how would that be pictured? A smile, a deep sigh of satisfaction, worshipful hands raised in excitement? Just the thought of that unmatched feeling pulsing uninterrupted through me is enough to make me HOPE now for that eternity even more.

  5. Helene April 14, 2014 at 7:46 am - Reply

    “I know prayer is a dance between complex situations, realities I don’t see or can’t grasp, and other people’s decisions.” That’s a great quote! I’m learning a lot about prayer in recent days and that’s a wonderful description of what’s happening.

  6. Michelle Anderson April 14, 2014 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    Really like this a lot. Like your perspective. Have a great week!

  7. Nancy Hirsch April 14, 2014 at 8:08 pm - Reply

    “But our hope doesn’t lie in us getting it right.” Amy Young

    Hi Amy,
    This will be my new facebook status and will go into my quote section. Very timely as I struggle with some things, especially how I handle it. Can you say perfectionism?

    Thanks,
    Nancy (from GEPC)

    PS, THanks for your last reply. :)

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