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Divine Hope; by Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac © Copyright 2010

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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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Hope (1)

Why Hope?

We grew up on believing in The Living Hope. We can obviously be reassured the Holy Spirit was never absent a single day.  His intercession is forever.

We know that we are all attracted to further The Kingdom where  Jesus is inviting us, which is the eternal happiness, the constant joy and where we can find Jesus rest  and no concerns to be worried about.

Thus, we are to assert our faith in Hope. For us, God is almighty and honest. His honesty, makes us have no doubt in what He promises us to be in.

On the other hand, we live in a painful world. Pain spreads everywhere. This world does not bear and endure its pain anymore, that's why to be justified, it chooses to renounce God, who promised us rest and happiness as though He does not exist.

In that matter, what turns to be dangerous is not the world turning to paganism since belief in paganism hides  a yearning to The True God, but it's that the world is turning  to atheism, an active atheism in which the world is organizing itself to destroy faithfulness, to stand up against God and to deny Hope.

The world builds on human efforts, willpower, and self-capacity training to reach the targeted results, even supernatural and uncanny. Thus, for this world, graces are unnecessary.

For us, things are different. Although we all experience pain living in this world, we choose to believe in God’s Hope and in His honesty. He is both almighty and merciful at the same time. Only with His peace we can endure our pains.  

That’s why Hope?

© Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved.



Last edited by Tarek Ch 2 on Mon May 03, 2010 2:55 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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Divine Hope (2)


What Is Hope?


We are talking about Someone who is strong and firm, and wants to support us because of his unlimited love towards us. He intervenes in our lives even if we don’t ask Him. This Someone is Our Almighty God, called so many times in the holy bible as “The Rock,” (located in the New and Old Testament, especially in the Psalms).  

On  this “Rock”-(Our God)- we may rely on Him when we are worn out, under one condition: totally submit to Him, to His Will, to His Love, since we believe that He aims to guide us to salvation, and to His many houses prepared for us. He is the shepherd. Therefore, we may repeat what “Charles de Foucault”, a French saint, prayed many years ago: “Lord, I put my own self into your hands, so you may do with it what You want to do. And, whatever you do, I’ll be grateful to You.”

Total submission means total trust, so, absolute Hope. It is what He recommended to  us, and remember He is a jealous God. ("I am the Lord thy God, mighty, jealous," …Exodus 20:5).

In Meribah, a place in the desert, there was no water for the people guided by Moses to drink. They quarreled with him, ("Is the LORD in our midst or not?")  and it sounded like he was scared from them. So Moses cried out to the LORD, "What shall I do with this people? A little more and they will stone me!" They all tested The God, The Just Judge. So, Moses and his brother Aaron would never enter the land given to the people of God: "because both of you broke faith with me among the Israelites at the waters of Meribath in the desert of Zin by failing to manifest my sanctity among the Israelites. You may indeed view the land at a distance, but you shall not enter that land which I am giving to the Israelites." (Deuteronomy 32:51-52).

Total Trust or Unworthy Hope.

Nevertheless, Hope never means laziness or sluggishness. We have to work, do, move, and at the same time, give our efforts to Him that He may strengthen them.

© Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved.




Last edited by Tarek Ch 2 on Mon May 03, 2010 2:58 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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Divine Hope (3)


When Hope?


What  usually stands in the way of our Hope?

In a word, it is the human hope which is not The Divine Hope we talked about above that may  stand in the way of our Hope. The human hope is  a human expectation or anticipation. It’s based on our reckoning; it builds on our own efforts. Therefore, it’s the opposite of The Divine Hope.

In other languages, one can find two different words to use for either Divine Hope or human hope.  For example: “espérance” and “espoir” in French language, “esperanza” and “espero” in Spanish … etc …
 
Human hope doesn’t lead to God, nor conduct to Him. It’s a wrong imitation of Divine Hope. Nevertheless, there is an inverse relation between these two hopes. In fact, Divine Hope increases when human hope decreases. The Divine One grows to be absolute only when the human one perishes and passes away.  

Let's suppose that one is in deep trouble, and has a way to get out of it, he has his own hope. But, when all his ways fail, and he realizes there is no way to pass off, he begins to look up to God, and his Divine Hope grows to be absolute.

When we surrender to Him, we let Him hold us and feed us with His Power and Wisdom. According to His promises, we believe that Our Lord intervenes in order to fulfill our needs, even our simple daily needs. He may do miracles also that will make us rest and be healed physically and spiritually. We believe too that He promises to flood upon us further graces which are not reachable by our human hope, just as eternal happiness and joy, realized Kingdom, salvation, etc.

This inverse relation between Divine Hope and human hope is obvious in Jesus' education and teaching. Two events in the Gospel mentioned it: The dead girl (the daughter of Jairus) rose from the dead, and the healing of the Phoenician woman.

© Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved..




Last edited by Tarek Ch 2 on Mon May 03, 2010 3:00 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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Divine Hope (4)

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Jairus and his dead girl.
(Matthew 9:18-26, Mark 5:21-44, Luke 8:40-56.)

Jairus, who was  a chief or a leader in his community, knelt before The Lord begging Him to heal his dying daughter.  Jesus went with him for that purpose, accompanied with the apostles and, as often, a large crowd of people. Jairus so, trusted Jesus hopefully. But, what does “hopefully” mean exactly? Is it Hope in God? Who is Jesus for Jairus? Is He a miracle maker? A healer? Is He The Son of God?  No doubt, Jesus, because of His lucidity, transparency and purity, had answers to all those questions, but He wanted to show Jairus trust and to transform it in an absolute hope in Him. What is most important to Our Lord is to prepare us for the kingdom of God.

Let us be in Jairus' place.

No doubt, he was thinking about his dying daughter. He wanted Jesus to come with him to his house as quickly as possible. Time is precious and invaluable. Jesus, in contrary to Jairus' thoughts, was walking slowly because of the enormous crowd. (The crowd was mentioned four times by Marcus in his Gospel).

We may, so, imagine how Jairus couldn’t wait to have The Lord in his house, and how he retained his nerves to not explode. We may too imagine his facial expressions showing his enormous worry of not being at the right time with Jesus in front of his dying daughter. His hope (human hope) decreased but did not perish, because Jesus walked with him, even if it was very slow.

Suddenly, the sick woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years appears. “She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse.” She touched Jesus’ cloak. Immediately her bleeding stopped and “she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.”  At once Jesus realized power had gone out from him. He stopped and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

Oh … what a question!

The disciples, astonished, didn’t hide their surprise of Jesus’ question: “You see the people crowding against you, and yet you can ask, ‘who touched me?’"  Jairus was at the point to despair.  His hope (i.e., human hope) lessens more and more, especially when The Lord kept looking around Him to see who had done it, until the scared woman knew what had happened to her, came and fell at His feet, and told Him the truth.

Jairus would have cried if he could. What a long conversation! "My daughter is waiting for you, O Lord." I think he was the only man who didn’t listen to that woman's story, the only man who didn’t hear The Lord's words to her: “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace, and be freed from your suffering.”

A part of his hope remained as Jesus continued walking.

Suddenly, Jairus saw some men coming from his house. They told him that his daughter is dead now, so why bother the teacher anymore?” Jairus’ girl is dead now, how can we still  talk about human hope? He had no expectations anymore. Human hope perished and left room for the Divine Hope. Jesus wanted to teach us about it, and ignoring what the men said to the leader, He told him: “Don’t be afraid, just believe.” This is absolute hope in God.

Divine Hope will grow in our hearts, to be on His highest level, when all human hope perishes.

We know the rest of the story… Jesus came with Jairus and His three disciples to the home of the synagogue leader. He saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. He went in and told them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” They laughed at him…. He went to where the child was, took her by the hand and told her. “Talitha koum” (which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). She stood right up and walked around, (she was twelve years old). After this, they were completely astonished.

Jairus, as we may think, didn’t believe in Divine Hope. He wanted Jesus to come to his house as a healer. Jesus, by this event, teaches us  The Hope in Him is not related to our expectations. We can’t feel it in our hearts unless our expectations perish and fall down.

What happened with the Phoenician woman was different. She demonstrated The Divine Hope growing in her heart. Let’s go to her.

©️ Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved.



Last edited by Tarek Ch 2 on Mon May 03, 2010 3:03 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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The Phoenician woman
(Matthew 15:21-28, Mark 7: 24-30).

To a place in the vicinity of Tyre and Sidon (cities of Lebanon at present), Jesus came and entered a house to  rest, without anybody knowing it , yet He couldn’t keep His presence a secret. A Canaanite woman, born in Phoenicia (Lebanon), who had a daughter suffering terribly from demon-possession, came to Him and cried out: ”Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
She trusted hopefully in Jesus'  power.

All the questions asked in Jairus' case may be repeated in this woman's case. What exactly does “hopefully” mean? Is it Hope in God?  Who is Jesus for that woman?  Is He a miracle maker?  A healer?  Is He The Son of God?  What does “The Son of David” mean to her?  And we may repeat that no doubt, Jesus, because of His lucidity, transparency and purity, had answers to all those questions, but He wanted to demonstrate the woman’s trust to the disciples, and after them, to us. Jesus is a good teacher.

”Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me!” The woman begged hard to The Lord, but He did not answer a word. Her human hope, no doubt, lessens a little bit. She passed by this first test and cried out again, but He didn’t answer again. Yet her human hope decreases more and more. She cried out again, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me!” So His disciples urged Him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.” Jesus looked at her and said: “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”

Human hope?! … Perhaps a little bit  of it remained.

The woman came and knelt before Him saying, “Lord, help me!” Jesus looked at her, and offered  her the last test, the huge test that one may consider it as an insult. He said to her: “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.”

Human hope?! … Not a little bit anymore. What is able to grow now is Divine Hope.

The woman, fulfilled by when she said, “Yes Lord, but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master's table.”

That is absolute Hope that Jesus wants us to have embedded in our hearts. At once, the woman received what she asked for.

Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed since that very hour.

©️ Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved.




Last edited by Tarek Ch 2 on Mon May 03, 2010 3:05 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac

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Divine Hope (6)


6 – Finally


We all encounter problems in our lives and we must search for solutions under God's eyes. He will help us no doubt. But, when we feel drowned by our problems, and we don't find any solution,  let us be confident that God has all the solutions suitable  to our salvation. He will solve our problems because He loves us. We must put our confidence in Him. The solution to our problems will be set. All what we have to do is increase our faith and our hope in Him. That’s what we mean when we say: “Jesus I trust in you!”  Think about it.

© Copyright 2010: Our Lady For Life Christo-centric Reflections: Dr. Tarek E. Chidiac. All rights reserved.



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