The assurance of things hoped for
With all these things in mind, dear brothers and sisters, stand firm and keep a strong grip on the teaching we passed on to you both in person and by letter. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope, comfort you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say. 2 Thessalonians 2:15-17 NLT
Our faith in God helps us get sustained when facing difficulties in life. Because faith is focused on God, it provides us confidence and hope knowing that our future is secured. As the author of Hebrews said, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (11:1 ESV). This is Paul’s encouragement to believers in Thessalonica. Having a sure hope provides endurance that makes believers “stand firm and keep a strong grip on the teaching” of God’s Word. Instead of becoming rattled and unsettled with the current circumstances, they find strength in the promises of God found in His Word. They do not have to be swayed by the proliferation of false teachings that will characterize the events surrounding the return of Christ for they have the clear teachings from God’s Word. Then Paul offered once again a prayer for these believers asking God to provide them the divine help so that they will remain faithful to His call. God is the one that will sustain His children for He “loved us and by his grace gave us eternal comfort and a wonderful hope.” These are our present realities. The world will not provide us these realities for they are obtained through the grace of God. When we receive the grace of God by admitting our sinfulness and recognize that Christ paid the price for our sin, then we were given the authority to call on “our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father.” To know we are loved by God will help us face difficulties, discouragements, persecutions and even the uncertainties in life. The more you draw yourself to God, the more you will grow in your character that reflects Him “in every good thing you do and say.” “So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image” (2 Corinthians 3:18).