Wishing and Hoping


Star light, star bright
First star I see tonight
I wish I may
I wish I might
Have the wish I wish tonight

I wasn’t much more than knee high when my grandmother Josephine taught me that poem. Like making a wish before blowing out birthday candles, I believed if I closed my eyes, thought of something I really wanted, and didn’t tell anyone, my wish would come true.

As we get older, we begin to hope for things that seem about as likely to happen as wishes on twinkling stars and glowing cakes. We say that we hope sickness would stop, leaders would lead, relationships would mend, and fighting would end. We hope, and we hope, and we hope some more, without truly believing those hopes will ever come true.

That’s the trouble with the way we use the word hope. We think it is synonymous with something we WISH would come true instead of something we KNOW will most certainly come true. Biblical hope in Jesus never disappoints. (Romans 5:5) It is a sure thing, an absolute, something we can count on! It’s a guarantee for Heaven’s sake! And aren’t we all looking for that? Our hope provides a confident assurance of God’s presence in times of trouble. It ensures our salvation through Jesus and confirms our destination. 

There are all kinds of storms raging around us right now. Some of us may even have emotional storms swirling inside. However, when we know there will be sunshine ahead, we can successfully, and even joyfully, endure a 6-hour drive to the beach in a hurricane (Yes, Ron and I did that last week)! 

Our short struggles here on earth can actually increase our faith and enlarge the hope we have in our forever home. This calm and reassuring hope can be the open door for someone looking for a better way to deal with their own turbulent heartache. Peter says, “If someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.” (1 Peter 3:15, NLT)

We can’t fully explain our hope without first explaining our faith. Faith powerfully fuses together what we believe about God and the trust we have in Him. 

We believe that God is who the Bible says He is. First and foremost, “God is love.” (1 John 4:8b) We believe that He can do what He says He can do. “I pray that you will continually experience the immeasurable greatness of God’s power made available to you through faith. Then your lives will be an advertisement of this immense power as it works through you! This is the mighty power that was released when God raised Christ from the dead and exalted him to the place of highest honor and supreme authority in the heavenly realm!” (Ephesians 1:19-20, TPT)

We trust that we are who God says we are! We are blessed, loved, chosen, holy, and adopted. (Ephesians 1:3-5) We trust that we can do what God says we can do. “God has made us to be more than conquerors, and his demonstrated love is our glorious victory over everything!” (Romans 8:37b) Don’t you love being on the winning team!

Now, close your eyes, think about where your hope lies, and then let others bask in the glow of all your confident twinkling and shining. 

“Now may God, the fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate with hope!”  (Romans 15:13, TPT)

Should I WISH or HOPE that you’ll go back and read that last verse one more time? 🙂

Posted in
a night sky wit text saying “Wishing and Hoping”

Donna Jackson

The Good Life

By Donna Jackson | September 20, 2022 |

My grandparents lived in my college town long before I became a student. They made sure that I knew their house was my home. Even though they’ve gone on to their new eternal home, being back in that town still feels like home.   Wandering from street to street wakes up sweet memories. Traveling just a…

When An Alligator Is Under Your Armpit

By Donna Jackson | September 13, 2022 |

Nine months ago, our daughter and son-in-law welcomed a five-year-old little boy from Taiwan into our tribe. He wears a perfect smile most of the time, and his eyes light up when he sees a new face. He welcomes everyone into his heart immediately. No one is allowed to be a stranger in his world…

Going Back to Kindergarten

By Donna Jackson | September 6, 2022

Year after year, a reserved spot on my fifth-grade classroom wall displayed the same laminated poster. On it were the simple, yet profound words of Robert Fulghum titled, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. Maybe you also remember seeing the same popular poster somewhere in your life.  After fulfilling my duty to laboriously…

We Interrupt This Program for a Special Announcement

By Donna Jackson | August 30, 2022

At 1:11 pm yesterday, our seventh grandchild arrived kicking and screaming. While I might have had time to string together a few paragraphs to craft a blog, I was much too excited to focus. I did, however, use my time to notice the goings and comings of those around me. Many young mothers wheeled by…

BREAD!

By Donna Jackson | August 23, 2022

Between church services Sunday morning I took a few minutes to do one of my favorite things – people watching. I observed men, women, and children of all ages, colors, sizes, and classes. Some men wore wrinkled sport shirts, others spiffy sport coats; some had donned long pants, others wore shorts; a few shiny wing…

Subtle Obedience

By Donna Jackson | August 16, 2022

What hints help you identify someone as a fellow believer? What causes you to inquire about someone’s faith? Are you drawn more toward people who do great public things for God or to those who work quietly behind the scenes? How might others recognize YOU as a believer? These are the questions I wrestle with;…

What Teachers Need From You

By Donna Jackson | August 9, 2022

As a first-year teacher, I soaked up every tidbit of advice my veteran cohorts floated my way. Some of it worked well for me, some of it didn’t fit my teaching style. I especially needed to hear how those master teachers conducted their parent conferences. Thankfully, I sat in on many meetings with a teacher…

Slip Sliding Away

By Donna Jackson | August 2, 2022

Maybe they just don’t see where you’re coming from. Or, maybe you’re looking at it all wrong. Maybe you’re both looking at things from totally different perspectives – from opposite ends of the spectrum. You intended to bless. They felt cursed. You see one side and they see the other. Whatever caused the rift, you’re…

One Team

By Donna Jackson | July 26, 2022

What seems like decades ago, (Oh, wait, it was decades ago.) I coached my daughter’s softball team for several seasons. I learned early on that it helped to keep a hit sheet, among other things, for each opponent. Knowing where each of their girls usually hit the ball allowed me to move my girls into…

God Was Not Surprised

By Donna Jackson | July 19, 2022

I learned the hard way that being negative can have adverse effects.  Maybe I should clarify that a smidge. My BLOOD TYPE is A negative, and apparently in 1959 hospitals could not type blood as well as they do now. After becoming anemic at age 2, I received a blood transfusion that introduced positive Rh factors…