|His Mercy: Hope|
by Fred Schubert
We are a people of HOPE
We have the greening -power of God within us.. The Spirit of Hope.
Jeremiah, who is considered the prophet of Hope, had this to say to a people who seemingly had lost everything...
ĎThe days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with you. I will put my law within you. I will write it on your hearts.íĒ Jer.31:31-33 How did God fulfill this prophesy? By sending His Son and endowing those who believed in Him with The Power and Grace of The Holy Spirit. Remember also the words of Jesus, Ďliving water...í
Jeremiah, gives us this beautiful Parable of the tree to illustrate how the sustaining water of The Holy Spirit will be our source of Hope...
'Those who trust The Lord, who put their hope in Him, are like a tree planted by a stream. The tree sends out itís roots to the water. It does not fear the coming of the heat. Itís leaves stay green. It does not worry when there is no rain. It still bears fruit.' Jer.17:7-9
What this parable reveals also is the relationship between Hope and Trust. (read again)
Trust is the tree. Hope the roots or shoots from the tree drink from the water in the stream. Jesus is the stream, the source of water and the water is the living water of The Supernatural Grace and Power of The Holy Spirit. So to speak of hope, which are those roots and shoots, we first need to speak about trust, which is the tree planted by a stream, which is God.
To be a person of Hope we need first to be that tree planted and rooted in God. So to be a person of real Hope, is to be a person who has put his Trust in God. Did you know we, like a tree grow roots? The creature tree has roots that grow downward into the soil and water of the earth. The creature man, however, has roots that grow upward into the life of The Living Spirit of God in Heaven. The roots that man has are the attachments of the heart. Do you remember Jesus saying, ĎWhere manís heart is, there is his treasure alsoí. What our hearts are attached or rooted to, is what we treasure, or what we beleive gives us life. However this is not the case most of the time.
For our treasures, what our hearts are rooted in, can also be the very objects and subjects of our destruction. The single object and subject of manís heart with all itís attachments, must be God and His eternal life-giving, life-sustaining Holy Spirit, otherwise man perishs. Manís eternal soul is either fed by Godís life-giving Spirit, or it starves, corrupts and dies as does manís flesh. Our hands and fingers are an extention of our hearts, they are like the visible roots of our hearts. I want you to think about your hands and fingers for a moment and what they like to reach for. What are the most regular habits of your hands? Are they busy in the service of others or are they busiest in the service of self? (thatís easy to answer if youíre a natural or spiritual mother or father) How often are your hands folded in prayer or raised-up in praise and worship? How often do they rest before the eucharistic Jesus in adoration or reach-out and actually recieve Him, as The Bread of Life in Mass? The habits of your hands are a good indication of where your hearts are rooted and what they are attached to and therefore what your treasure is or isnít.
TRUST IN GOD,is a heart anchored and rooted in God and filled with blessed Hope. But not just Hope but also blessed Faith and blessed Love. The bottom line of this teaching is this: blessed hope, blessed faith and blessed love are the supernatural gifts of The Spirit, God gives those who have uprooted their hearts and lives from the world and everything in it that does not lead them to God. In this way, they have planted themselves in Jesus,TRUSTING IN HIM, to be the source of everything they need, Ďlike a tree planted by a streamí.