Years ago, I worked as an office manager for an insurance agent. One of my responsibilities included sending out letters with enclosed forms that needed to be signed and returned by the policyholder. Along with the items sent was a self-addressed, stamped envelope in which the insured could place the necessary forms and return them at his convenience. Without fail, the closing on each informative letter ended with the words:
Thanking you in advance.
I was thanking the policyholders for fulfilling the request, even before they had determined to respond. I was not simply wishing they would complete and return the required forms, I was fully expecting them to do so. And I was even willing to stake a stamp on it. In short, I was applying faith in the customer to do what was needed.
In similar fashion (only on a much larger scale), we are called to place our hope in God. In Hebrew, a definition for hope is tiqvah: hope; expectation; something yearned for and anticipated eagerly; something for which one waits.
Having hope is not just yearning for something, it is yearning with the expectancy of seeing the fulfillment of that for which you are hoping. It includes a built-in anticipation of results, even though there may be a season of waiting before said results are seen or experienced.
Hoping in God’s intervention includes a thanking Him in advance mindset. Cultivating a heart of gratitude while the storm is still raging, praising Him in the midst of the problem, and trusting that the envelope containing the signature of God’s deliverance is on its way to you.
Regardless of the need, setting our hopes on God is always the answer. Believing that He will respond to each circumstance with just the right remedy is a surefire bet. Even when there appears to be no possible way for anything good to come out of your present situation. God is not beyond creating a way of escape, nor is He powerless to produce the means to bring forth His glory in the most disheartening of times.
So go ahead and pour out your heart to God. Write those letters with the petitions that you long to see fulfilled. Tell God of your brokenness, your dreams, your heartaches, your desires. Ask for His intervention. And above all, be certain to thank Him in advance for His response. Then place it all in one, big burden and forward to heaven’s communication center (See 1 Peter 5:7 and Hebrews 7:25).
And while you are waiting, remind yourself of God’s faithfulness in not only meeting your needs, but exceeding them in ways that are sure to bring about cause for thanksgiving as you see His glory revealed. Hold onto hope, dear one, even as you wait with anticipation for God’s will to be done. Here in your life, even as it is in heaven.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. ~Jeremiah 29:11
But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance. ~ Romans 8:25
Return to the stronghold, you prisoners of hope. Even today I declare that I will restore double to you. ~Zechariah 9:12
Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. ~ Romans 15:13
This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil. ~ Hebrews 4:19
Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the Lord.
~ Psalm 31:24
Therefore, we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18