Of Mice and Hope

4 For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope (Romans 15).

It seems much is often said of the importance of faith and love in our Christian walk, but it also seems we do not often speak as much of “hope” in our experience. Yet, without hope we would surely despair. From what we read here, God has provided “the Scriptures” for the specific purpose of producing hope in us through its teachings, as we are “instructed” in them, finding “encouragement” in them, and “persevering” because of them.

I once read of an experiment performed on two groups of mice. One group received an electrical shock each time they approached a specific place in the cage, learned not to go there, and therefore lived comfortably in their surroundings. The other group received the lesser levels of shock, yet randomly throughout the cage. There was no rhyme or reason to why or when they would be shocked. The result? They all just gave up and died. Why? Probably because it would seem even the simplest of God’s creatures still need at least some small degree of hope. 

Lord, we thank You for this great hope You have instilled within us through Your Word. We know how things will end because we have the last Chapter in our hands. Help us This Day to walk in this hope—avoiding sin, and persevering through the wicked world in which we live. Amen.