This post is Day 3 in a series of studies about “Hope”. I strongly suggest you begin with the introduction to this study, please click here to read it.

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Hope – Day 3

Proverbs 13:12

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.

The Thought

This verse is very appropriate for Naomi who featured in yesterday’s message. We can imagine that when she and her husband Elimelek left the famine in their homeland of Bethlehem, they had high hopes of a better future for themselves and their two sons. But life in Moab turned out not to be as they had hoped. They had their hopes deferred and Naomi’s life became one of hopelessness. We can imagine her misery, her disappointment, and I’m sure she would have described herself as being sick at heart.

In her wisdom she suggested her daughters in law returned to their own Moabite families, that would have been the “normal” thing to do. The older one followed that advice, and we have no idea whether her hopes of a new Moabite husband were fulfilled. Ruth did not feel she could do that, and chose to stay with Naomi.

Even these non-Jewish daughters in law were hearing from the God they didn’t believe in, and eventually Ruth and Naomi both had their longings fulfilled and the family tree of their lives continued. Right through to Jesus (Matthew 1:5).

There are many others in the Bible who had their hopes fulfilled. Abraham when he was asked to sacrifice Isaac (Genesis 22). Daniel when he was sharing the lion’s den (Daniel 6). The disciples when they discovered that Jesus was alive once more (Luke 24:30). Reading any one of those stories can help us to be hopeful about the future.


Spend some time today thinking about your longings for this new year. Do you have specific hopes for yourself, your family, and your church community. Talk to The Lord about those hopes today.

Thank Him in advance for those hopes fulfilled.

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