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Day 26

The Effect of Hope

by René Schlaepfer

Read 1 John 3:1-3

Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure. [1 John 3:3]

Parade magazine told the amazing story of self-made millionaire Eugene Lang, who had been asked to speak to a class of 59 sixth-graders in East Harlem, New York. What could he say to inspire these students? Statistically, most of them would drop out of school to sell drugs or join gangs. In fact, he wondered how he could get these children to even look at him.

Tossing his notes aside, he decided to speak from his heart. “Stay in school,” he said, “and I’ll pay the college tuition for every one of you!” At that instant, the lives of those kids changed. For the first time they had hope.

As one student said, “I had something to look forward to, something waiting for me. It was a golden feeling.” Nearly 90 percent of that class went on to graduate from high school and enter college, far above the normal rate for their peers.

Did you know you have a similar promise? Reread 1 John 3:1–3, where the writer explains that God the Father lavishes his love on us, his children, with the promise of a great gift on our “graduation day”: We will be like Him, without sin. Theologians call it our “glorification.” Then he says, everyone who has this hope purifies himself.

What does he mean, hope “purifies” us? Very much like what that student meant when he spoke of the motivation he got from Mr. Land’s offer. When you’re promised a bright future, you’re inspired to endure, to do well, to say “no” to the demons that tempt you, and “yes” to the opportunities before you!

You too can say, “I have something to look forward to, something waiting for me.” And you can inspire others with this same promise! Hope really is a golden feeling!

Question to Consider

How does the idea of heavenly resurrection and reward motivate me?


Lord, thank You so much for lavishing love on me as one of Your children! Thank You for the promise of heavenly transformation — may this hope purify me in a very practical way here on earth!