The Only Hope I Have

A very old audio home recording of this song may be heard here.

God’s love and mercy never fail;
They’re fresh as every brand-new day,
Sure as every sunrise.
God helps those who place their trust in Him
He is the only hope I have.

I know how it feels to be punished by the Lord,
Locked in His prison, with no hope for release,
Thrown into such darkness that each day seems like the night,
And choked by the poison of my own bitter thoughts.

Then in my depression, hope returned.

God’s love and mercy never fail;
They’re fresh as every brand-new day,
Sure as every sunrise.
God helps those who place their trust in Him
He is the only hope I have.

About This Song:
RogerCapped - smaller
The prophet Jeremiah wasn’t the only person in the Bible who let his depression show when he was in bad circumstances. Poor Jonah really poured his heart out to God during his time in the whale’s belly. (See “Jonah’s Prayer”.)

The most depressing part of “The Only Hope I Have” is based on Lamentations 3:1-18. I’m including only verses 7-9 here, but take my word for it (better yet, look it up yourself in the Bible), the rest of it is depressing, too.

He has walled me in so I cannot escape; he has weighed me down with chains.
Even when I call out or cry for help, he shuts out my prayer.
He has barred my way with blocks of stone; he has made my paths crooked.
(NIV)

The transition from depression to hopeful comes in Lamentations 3:19-21.

19 I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.
20 I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
21 Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
(NIV)

When hope comes in this passage, it’s like a blackened sky that fireworks have suddenly brightened like daylight. Here are verses 22-25…

22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”
25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him,  to the one who seeks him;
(NIV)

I began this song with the same stanza it ends with for a reason: to focus on hope rather than on hopelessness.

Most of us–perhaps all–experience at least a small bit of depression at times, but we’re not crippled by it. I’ll never forget one period of time in my life when I went right back to bed after getting up; I couldn’t face the circumstances of being awake.

Yet my depression wasn’t as bad as what a number of people suffer, and my heart goes out to those who are crippled by severe depression on an ongoing basis.

When we’re going through times like those, don’t we sometimes tend to blame God for our bad circumstances?  Although He’s big enough to listen to those accusations without growing angry–He listens compassionately–He’s not to blame. God didn’t create bad things or evil.

The free will God endowed each of us with resulted in sin, and sin has brought about suffering and death. And, yes, the evil that surrounds us and seems to grow worse with every passing day.

No matter how deep into depression we may sink, those of us who’ve become God’s children through faith in Jesus Christ have a special source of hope others don’t have. Whenever we examine God’s Word, we  come across numerous reassuring promises God has made to provide for His children.

Through Him, nothing is eternally hopeless.

God may not provide for our needs in our choice of times or ways, but since He is unfailingly faithful, we can trust Him to always do what He knows is ultimately best for us.

Can we expect less from our Heavenly Father than we do from our earthly fathers? Will He fail to provide the best for His children, even if that sometimes means allowing us to suffer the results of bad decisions and wrong words and actions?

No matter what my circumstances, God is the only hope I have. God will fulfill His promises in His own time and His own way.

Do you have that hope?

Feel free to leave a comment and come back again next week. Better still, subscribe to receive these posts by email.

Best regards,
Roger

Eighteen Novel 4x6 Postcard

Links you might be interested in:

About Roger E. Bruner

Seventy-four-year-old Roger E. Bruner is the author and publisher of eighteen Christian novels and the writer of more than two hundred Christian songs and choruses, a handful of musical dramas, and a number of shorter works. He sings, plays guitar and bass, and records his original songs in his home studio. He will be active in his church's nursing home ministry again when circumstances permit and in the church choir when it starts up again. In the meantime he'll keep playing bass on the praise team. Married for seventeen years to Kathleen, he has one grown daughter. Kathleen has two. Roger enjoys reading, moderate exercise, photography and book cover design (he's done all of his own except for Rosa No-Name), playing Snood, making walking sticks, and complaining about the state of the nation while continuing to pray for it.
This entry was posted in Depression, God's Promises, God's Provision, Hope, Lamentations, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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