Recently the Jack’s Winning Words blog has featured a couple of post on wishing and hope –
“Wishing are the dreams we dream when we’re awake.” (Buddy DeSylva)
“Accept life and what it brings, I hope tomorrow you’ll find better things.” (The Kinks)
Jack went on to write – Peter Marty wrote recently about the difference between wishing and hoping. Wishing upon a star is different than placing hope in God. Hope seems to have a spiritual tone to it. It’s what sustains us when we’re not ready to give up on God. The Kinks’ song came out of the writer’s down time. As I read the lyrics I see more hoping than wishing. What do you see? 😉 Jack
I suppose that one could argue about which comes first faith or hope. I would take the position that hoping in the absence of faith is just like dreaming or wishing; there is no basis for belief that something will actually happen to make the dream or wish come true. As Jack wrote, “Wishing upon a star is different than placing hope in God”, and the main difference is that “placing hope in God” is actually placing your faith in God. After all, who are you asking when you wish for something without a belief in God? Who will grant your wish? To whom do you turn when you have a dream of a better life? Hope based upon faith provides clear instructions on where to take your wishes and dreams and how to ask for what you need and want.
“And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” – Matthew 21:22
As you read the first part of that quote the tendency is to say, “Alright, I can have whatever I ask for”; however, the kicker is in those last four words – “if you have faith.” Time after time in the Bible you will read that faith is the precursor to hope or the fulfillment of prayers. Many times we “pray” for things that we do not get and there is usually the same answer for why not –
“You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” – James 4:3
There are many things that we may dreams about or wish for that fall under the general category of our passions – the things of this world that we sometimes think are so important. We might pray to win the Lotto or we might pray for a new car or for other material things, rather than praying that God help us do the right things in life and trust that He will provide all that we really need. The key is having faith first and allowing that faith to guide what you ask God for in your prayers. Base your hopes on faith and they will be fulfilled –
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” – Mark 11:24
I think I wrote here once before that, if I happen to include a mention of the Lottery in my prayers, I ask God to help me do the right things with the money, if I should win. Lately I have refocused my requests in prayer to a very simple ask – “God help me make good decisions today.” I have faith that those good decisions will actually be God decisions.
What do you ask God for in your prayer? Are your hopes based upon your faith?