« Day 40  |  Day 42 »

Day 41

Motivated by Hope

by René Schlaepfer

Read Hebrews 11:32-40

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. [Hebrews 11:1–2]

In yesterday’s reading Mark Spurlock told the true story of Flagstaff, Maine. When that town fell into disrepair many years before the dam upriver was finished, someone asked, “Why?” The answer famously came back: “If there is no hope in the future, there is no motivation in the present.”

Victor Frankl, a Jewish psychologist, discovered this truth in a Nazi concentration camp during World War II. Frankl began observing fellow prisoners to discover what coping mechanism could help him endure. Here’s what he found: People who could not make their present suffering fit with their faith, who could not find its meaning in their world view, despaired and eventually gave up and died. But those who could find meaning from their faith were then able to find hope for a future beyond their present suffering, and they survived!

The writer of the book of Hebrews reminds his readers of this very truth in Hebrews chapter 11. Writing to Christians who were tempted to give up on their faith because of persecution, he paints a stirring picture of the ancient heroes of the faith who braved dangers, endured suffering, and took huge risks because they had something to live — and die — for: The promise of God that the best was yet to come. He says that this is the very essence of faith. Then he challenges his readers to have the same kind of endurance based on faith and hope.

Question to Consider

How does hope in the future provide motivation in the present? How do you see this truth in the world around you? If you were in a prison like the one Victor Frankl survived, how would your faith, your world view, help you deal with your suffering?


Lord, help my hope in the future give me motivation in the present!