The dawn of a new year brings hope and uncertainty. Hope, because deep within we yearn for the arrival of positive changes; and uncertainty, because we are unable to predict what will happen—whether our hopes will materialize into reality. Though some economic intellectuals have predicted the future stability of the economy, the verdict is still out. Unexpected events can cause tectonic shifts in the financial realm resulting in negative cash flow. This will then have major effects on the socio-religio-political status of (especially) those who find themselves in middle class and below.
The truth is our hopes find themselves in the midst of uncertainty. As uncomfortable as we may be bearing them within that environment, they must testify. Hope must stare in the darkness of the unknown and dare to march on while embodying the belief that negatives and positives only serve to emphasize the grandeur of the good that has yet to emerge. Hope must be allowed to assert itself amidst the ravishing winds of these tornado-like episodes.
Some advocate the development of an optimistic worldview in their discourses. Their stirring sermons on positive thinking, preached on social and academic pulpits, serve as catalysts to propel many from depressive stages to a “yes we can” attitude. Positive thinking is a necessary state of mind that affects the overall health of an individual. Thus, one cannot do without it.
Christians are not at odds with positive thinking. The problem that arises is that the world has a different definition of positive than we do, different from the one it had even 30 years ago. As empires rise and crumble like skyscrapers, so do anthropo-centric world-views on positive, right, and good. They are constantly changing and morphing, because in reality, they are defined by those who have espoused the theory of relativism. Relativism justifies the un-changeableness and changeability of one’s judgment within an environment (to which everyone else should take a laissez-faire attitude). The philosophy that the self-help gurus promote encourages the belief in ones’ own ability to bring what is hoped for into existence, according to what they deem appropriate in a given environment.
For the Christian, Jesus Christ is “our hope” (1 Tim. 1:1). It is not only that we place our trust in the fact that Jesus can and will do things to ultimately bring us to a greater end, but that He Himself is our hope. Our hope is not an abstract theory, but a living God, whose second coming will result in the ultimate good for His followers. Therefore, our confidence–as we stare into the unknown–should be greater than that of those who place theirs’ in statistics and optimistic rhetoric. The One in whom we hope is our hope, and has a comprehensive view of what is contained in the darkness, for the darkness is not dark to Him (Ps. 139:12).
He does not make vague and incomprehensible promises, but He speaks as one with a proven track-record and the capability of doing something new (Isa. 43:19). If He is indeed our hope, then it cannot change in the midst of turbulent times. Whether we are carried off to sleep by the lullabies of silver-tipped bullets whistling overhead in the Baghdad night; the roar of a child’s belly in a hut on the famine-ridden African plains; the echoes of coins hitting the floor as young children are sold as prostitutes in the ghettos of Asia; the frivolous waltz of atheistic Europe as it urges on moral decadence; or the mingling of flesh and jaws as the capitalistic west chews up the savings of the poor, we must hope.
What have we done with Jesus? Whatever we did last year (if negative) does not need to be duplicated this year. We can start new. Here is an opportunity to refocus our lenses to adjust to the Christo-centric worldview, in which Jesus is our hope. I pray that the new year brings us closer to Jesus. If you haven’t accepted Him as your personal Savior or if you have become lax in your Christianity, there is no day like today. Let’s make Jesus our hope in this uncertain world.