What is the “One” hope?
I was thinking recently, what if I only had one chance to share about OneHope and time to use only one verse, what would it be?
Right now, here is what I would choose:
This promise is to you, to your children, and to those far away—all who have been called by the Lord our God. Acts 2:39
In this verse, Peter is trying to explain to those listening that this promise from God—to one day be reunited with Him—is where our hope is found. You might say this is the “one” hope we all share and from which all our faith springs.
The reason I chose this verse is because I understood it in a painfully fresh way after a recent trip to France.
France is my favorite place in the world. However, after losing my mom two years ago, it’s now almost torturous to visit. It’s where mom and I grew the closest during my tween and teen years. After being evacuated from Beirut, Lebanon, Dad had to travel a lot, so I enjoyed some rich one-on-one time with mom.
Kim and I took my eldest daughter and son-in-law to France last month, revisiting all the “old places,” showing them where I grew up. It was filled with nostalgia, and every place I went I heard mom’s voice. Although mom isn’t here anymore, her presence is. It’s almost painful… because feeling her near, yet knowing she’s gone, is so filled with longing—longing to be reunited and experience things together again, like we used to.
This is the cry of the human heart—this longing to be reunited. It’s embedded in all of humanity—our intended place is to be with our Creator. When sin entered the world, the proximity of God and man was broken, leaving us longing for a complete return to His presence.
This is the promise Peter is explaining.
There is a deep longing and hunger and thirst in all of humanity. Every person on the planet is desperately searching for something. Hope encapsulates the answer our souls are longing for.
The more I search the Scriptures, the more I see the narrative of human journey on a hunt for God’s presence.
Presence is the key promise of God from Eden to Moses. Jesus even cries out for the presence of His Father on the cross. When He leaves this earth, He says, I’m leaving but I’m not leaving you alone, I’m sending the Holy Spirit.
While I love that the spirit of my mom is still close—I would rather have my mom. It’s the same with the Holy Spirit. I’m so thankful to have His presence continually with me, but there is an aching to be fully reunited with Christ.
This is the great promise of the Gospel: a journey to hope that relationship with the Father is being restored.[Tweet “This is the great promise of the Gospel: A journey to hope that relationship with the Father is being restored.”]
Jesus makes it clear we haven’t been put on earth to spend all of our time in God’s presence, but we are given a set amount of days to spread this promise to others.
The motivation for this mission is that we’ve tasted His presence, and it overflows and bubbles out into the street making people say what is this? I want that too!
The danger comes when the work of the Gospel becomes work rather than the overflow of His life and presence.
My life increasingly needs to be a balancing act between spending time in His presence and sharing what I learn there. Spending time in His presence is essential to keep it fresh and real, not to keep it to myself, but to be in it enough to be able to give it away—compelled by the Good News to take it to the ends of the earth and to those far off where they’ve never even heard about this promise.[Tweet “My life increasingly needs to be a balancing act between spending time in God’s presence and sharing what I learn there.”]
If I had only one chance to share about what we do at OneHope and why we do it, I would simply say: We know the promise and we are called to bring the truth of this promise to every child in every generation so that they may know Jesus—the one and only hope of seeing this promise come to pass.
Oh come Lord, like a rushing wind
We are desperate, for Your presence
Revive us, by Your spirit within
We want to see You again
– See You Again, Anthony Evans