Maybe you are ready… ready to give an answer. If someone asks you why you have this hope or why you believe what you believe, you have an answer, but do you have the answer in the right attitude?
Meekness and fear. Not rude. Not belligerent. Not demanding or prideful.
I remember when I first got saved. I was attending Bible college. Suddenly, I felt I knew everything, had all the right answers and was going to win all my family and friends to the truth.
And much of what I believed and said really was truth. But it was my pride and arrogance that really damaged relationships. It turned their ears and hearts away from truth.
Why meekness? Why should we, if we have truth, answer in meekness? Because we need to remember the grace that was given to us when we didn’t deserve it.
Grace… unmerited favor. Answering people with a kindness even when they are not treating you with kindness.
Why with fear? Not fear as in knees shaking, but respect.
Seasoned with salt… salt makes things taste good. It is also a preservative. Preserving what? Preserving testimony, relationship, emotional control, and NEVER straying from truth.
Speak the truth in love… speak the truth in meekness… Speak the truth with respect… speak the truth in grace… and speak the truth in such a manner that it is not compromised, nor is your testimony or relationship with those you are speaking to damaged.
A reason of the hope…
Hope… confident expectation. Not “maybe it will happen.” A driving, uplifting, without a doubt assurance that pushes me forward even through persecution, trial, circumstance, or disappointments.
Confidence that the moment I finish my last breath here on Earth, I will be in the presence of my Saviour. Assurance that I have eternal life. Knowing that either I will meet Him through the vehicle of death or through the Rapture. Celebrating the victory that has not yet been fully seen with my eyes, but has been fully secured. Fully persuaded.
Hope. Why do I hope? Why am I so confident?
Is it because my church says so? They DO say so, but that isn’t why. Is it because it is the tradition of my ancestors? Nope. Because Mom and Dad were good church going folk? Um… no.
Is it because a biblical apologist made a good argument? No.
Is it because a creation scientist gave scientific evidence? Though I truly enjoy the study of creation… no.
Why do I have this hope?
In the States, my picture of suffering was very different than it is now. To me, suffering was:
Though those things are difficult and most certainly are a form of persecution, my views of suffering have transformed since coming here.
It now looks more like this:
I remember one year our family went to the beach. We always went to the same place each year: Schooner Ridge in Duck, North Carolina. We always went in the off season… less crowds, less immodesty, and better pricing! We had the greatest time as a family. We really love the beach and miss it so much!