Christ Our Hope 

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… Lord Jesus Christ, our hope…  (1 Timothy 1:1)

We Christians, if we are united to Christ, should be full of hope. If we feel the burden of the world because of what is happening around us to friends or family, or even if the news weighs us down, we still should be hopeful because we are united to Christ. Even if we have sinned and need to repent, we still should be full of hope. St Isaac the Syrian comments:

It is proper for a Christian even when he has done all he has commanded to do, all righteousness, to consider that he has done nothing (Luke 17:10).  . . .   Though he despises himself, his heart is filled with hope, joy, and expectation of that Kingdom and of salvation, reflecting that, ‘If today I am not redeemed due to my sins, I shall be redeemed by grace tomorrow.’ The man who plants a vineyard first reckons in his mind the harvest, the tribute he will give to the king, and the expenses he must pay from his household; then he undertakes the work. So it is also in our case. We endure the afflictions of the narrow way in hope of our salvation and that we shall be accounted worthy of eternal life. For without hope and joy the burden of labor and the hardship of tribulation and patience would weigh heavily upon us.”  (THE ASCETICAL HOMILIES, p 458)

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Even if today’s events or news cause us to feel despondency or despair, as St Isaac says if we don’t feel redeemed today, we can hope that tomorrow we will be. So we sing in the Akathist, “Glory to God for All Things”:

No one can put together what has crumbled into dust, but You can restore a conscience turned to ashes. You can restore to its former beauty a soul lost and without hope. With You, there is nothing that cannot be redeemed. You are love; You are creator and Redeemer. We praise You singing: Alleluia! 

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I also would say if by listening to your favorite politicians or political pundits you feel angry, fearful, or hopeless, then recognize that their message is not Christian. Turn them off and instead listen to Christ our Hope or go out and be neighbor to someone in need of love. Christ tells us:

“I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

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