As we cross the threshold from one year to the next, most of us feel a renewed sense of hope and possibility. Even if the previous year was full of disappointment, there is something about a new year that beckons us to believe again. 

This phenomenon makes me think of Hebrews 11:1, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.” Until recently, I never saw this important connection between faith and hope. As Christians, we place a weighty emphasis on faith and not always an equal emphasis on hope. But as we can see, hope is the prerequisite for faith. 

It’s no wonder the enemy assaults our hope since it grants him access to our faith. 

I know firsthand how complicated our relationship to hope can be. The degree to which we experience the sting of disappointment is often the degree to which hope feels dangerous. We’re tempted to keep our hopes low to avoid future pain and disappointment. We figure it’s the safest and most responsible approach to take when in reality, our hope is being stifled and controlled by fear.

What does it look like to hope wholeheartedly without succumbing to fearful suggestions of future pain? Hebrews 6:19 says, “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure…”

I find it interesting that scripture identifies hope as an anchor for our soul, not faith. Think about how sturdy and strong an anchor is. It steadies a whole ship, and I believe hope can do the same for us. Contrary to how it might feel, hope is not fragile and can withstand an onslaught of unforeseen pain and still keep us tethered to God and his promises. 

This kind of hope is one that isn’t thwarted or overtaken by disappointment. It’s strong enough to withstand delays, confusion, fear, and much more. And it’s this kind of hope that safeguards and fosters our faith to continue believing God for the impossible.

I’m also not talking about denial. There is a fine line between hope and denial, and there is a tendency for all of us to landslide into denial when we’re afraid to face reality. Without realizing it, we cross the line from hope into denial which often keeps us in situations that aren’t good for us. So, if I’m talking about a hope that doesn’t deny the reality of our difficult circumstances and is strong enough to face an onslaught of doubt and disappointment, what kind of hope is this? And how do we access it?

I was asking myself a similar question recently and thought of these verses in II Corinthians 4:17-18 TPT, “We view our slight, short-lived troubles in the light of eternity. We see our difficulties as the substance that produces for us an eternal, weighty glory far beyond all comparison, because we don’t focus our attention on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but the unseen realm is eternal.”

I realized that we access this kind of hope by staying connected to a greater, heavenly reality. These verses remind us of the value and purpose that transcend our current difficult circumstances. If we are trying to face the often scary realities in front of us without being intimately connected to this heavenly and eternal reality, it will be impossible to withstand the disappointments that inevitably come. 

And as we’ve discussed, this hope is vital to the faith we need as we navigate the peaks and valleys of our lives. Seeing our current circumstances as temporary experiences that are yielding beautiful things now and for eternity will equip us with the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other. 



  1. How does seeing our current circumstances as temporary and yielding beautiful things now and for eternity equip us with the strength to keep going?
  2. How does the idea of hope being an anchor for the soul make you feel?
  3. How does the concept of faith being the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen relate to the idea of hope?

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Barbara Hill

Barb Hill lives in Nashville, TN with her sweet pup Nash. She is a therapist with an undergrad in Biblical studies and Masters in Biblical counseling as well as in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Barb is passionate about writing, traveling with friends, and working with her clients. She just published her first book, Seasons of Waiting: An Invitation to Hope, with Tyndale House.

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