Unspoken Hopes

hebrews 11:1:
faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen

faith is the substanceof
things hoped for — but:
the things i hope for
haven’t been my reality

does this mean my hopes
are temporal or eternal?

i seem to place
so much weight
and expectation
on short term:
pleasures, plans
or short-lived:
experiences, events

i create these ideals
of the way i imagine
things should be and
am left empty when
i realise: my
is not reality

this temporal kind
of hoping is
e x h a u s t i n g
it is as though there
are these
unspoken hopes
inside of me
these expectations
i have for myself
and others

i am forever
crushed under
the weight of

as nothing meets
this aching
inside of me

so i find myself
s p i r a l l i n g
my hopes dying

but this is not how
we were created to be:
forever wanting

our temporal reality
tempts us to believe
that we should be:
hoping for more
wanting more

no wonder so many of us
are left spiralling:
hopes deflating
reality shaking

our cultural narrative
conditions us to believe
that our hope is found:

in financial security
in career certainty
in social popularity
in a disney love story
in material prosperity

we are sold the lie
that we are lacking
and need to find
our meaning in doing

we place this unnecessary
p r e s s u r e
on temporal hope to perform
what is only found
by holding onto eternal hope

hope often masquerades
as our expectations of
someone or something

but true, eternal hope
is not found within us
it is G I V E N to us

(1 peter 1:3-6, 2 cor. 4:16-18)

when we try to muster up
hope in and for ourselves
that is when we create these
ideas and dreams
of how we want our life to be

this is when our temporal reality
only becomes more and more
d i s a p p o i n t i n g

we are never satisfied
in our searching:
always empty

our faith starts breaking
because we set our hope
on what is ever-changing

but what of this eternal hope?

the hope that we are called to
rejoice in (rom. 12:2). a hope
that presents itself as steadfast
love (ps. 33:18). a hope that
speaks of freedom (rom 8:18-21).
a hope that echoes of a greater
glory (rom. 5:2). a hope that calls
us to rest fully on the grace that
is GIVEN to us as a gift (1 pet.1:13).
a hope that is an anchor for our
souls (heb. 6:19). a hope that does
not put us to shame (rom. 5:5).
a hope that is living (1 pet.1:3).

what is this compelling hope?

in scripture we learn that
the substance and source
of our hope is in JESUS

could it be that we are
never satisfied with more
because we are not satisfied
in him, or satisfied that he is
than we could hope for?

the LORD invites us to find our hope
and satisfaction in him for a reason:
he promises to GIVE US a future and hope

we will not find hope in this world or in people
and place, or in ourselves ——– but IN HIM

without him our lives will be lacking
we will be left wanting and feel empty
as though there is something missing

i know that my own hope is misplaced
and my faith starts to go astray when i
start to look for substance, satisfaction,
and evidence in everything but him

a convicting caution for myself and maybe for you
is a question we need to ask of our heart and mind:

are we hoping in him,
or hoping for things from him?

are we hoping in him,
or hoping that by hoping in him
we will have our own hopes fulfilled?

this is my prayer for us:

may the eyes of our hearts be enlightened
so that we may know what is the hope
to which he has called us (eph. 1:18).

may we be careful to surrender our hopes to him,
and to set our hope fully on him, for he is the
alpha and omega, the beginning and end, the first
and last, the substance and source of our hope.

he is the only one who can satisfy us, who can fulfil
our needs both now and into eternity. and.
he is trustworthy. he is a safe place for our hope.

“hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a desire fulfilled is a tree of life”


“for in this hope we were saved.
now hope that is seen is not hope.
for who hopes for what he sees?
but if we hope for what we do not
see, we wait for it in patience”


“…as we look not to the things that
are seen but to the things that are
unseen. for the things that are seen
are transient, but the things that are
unseen are eternal”
(2 cor.4:18)

faith is the evidenceof
things not seen … but:
the things i see and
don’t see are framed by
my perception of reality.

so often i just focus on
what is in front of me:

what people do or don’t do.
what people say and don’t say.
and anything else. the unseen.
the unsaid
. but. all of this is
subject to my imagination, my
perception of reality. a faulty,
fleeting reading of surroundings.

i am left constantly filling the
silences, the missing pieces;

that which is unseen becomes
vulnerable to my insecurities

it is as though
these gaps in
our reality can
become traps
for our fears

we fill these
frames with
either: what
we want to see,
or what we fear
is the reality;
what we are
afraid to believe

we can easily allow
our insecurity and
uncertainty to speak
to the unseens in our
stories. and our stories
are being written and
rewritten based on our
reading of reality.

one of the powerful concepts that has stuck
with me from the hamilton musical is that
we can “erase ourselves” from the narrative

how true, that we can erase the evidence of
reality, when we start reading our stories
through a frame of insecurity and uncertainty

but faith invites us into certainty, to security
in the seen and unseen, to assurance in hope

the only problem is, if i’m honest with myself
faith does not fill either of these things in me:

the seen nor the unseen

instead i can spiral into my own story
of reality that distorts my true identity

and that only leaves me empty, numb
in that place i feel isolated, alone

instead of listening to faith, to hope
i listen to the lie that: the unseen,
the gaps, the silences, the breaks, the
empty spaces in my life are all a sign
that i am:


(see “wound of rejection”)

in the darkness of the night
i am more prone to struggling
and wrestling with this unseen

i am left in the battlefield of my mind
fighting against my very own self and
twisted thoughts that send me in a



of course i know i am not alone

b u t

it feels like it when i find myself

trapped in those gaps
speaking to silence
entering into the empty
belonging to breaks

this sorrowful reflection was written
a few months ago during a time and
it seemed fitting to share it now. and
to reread it through the lens of hope:

“… the word ‘hope” (in psalm 62:5).
the Hebrew term literally means
“a cord, as an attachment.’ every one
of us is hanging on to something or
someone for security … if it’s someone
or something other than God alone,
you’re hanging on by a thread –
the wrong thread.”
 – Beth Moore

Respond from the Heart