“Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.” Psalm 43:5 (NASB)
The Psalmist recognized that he was unsettled and did not have peace. He also recognized it was not good to remain in this state, so he began to encourage himself as well as remind himself of where his hope should come from and who his God is. Hope is waiting with trust and expectation. We can hope with full confidence for many things and if our expected outcome does not occur, our countenance changes and despair, lack of peace, anxiety, fear, and even anger can result. Some of us hope for promotions and financial advancement, as well as prestige and status of a new career, title, or position at work. For some, a change in marital status brings expectations of happiness and fulfillment. In all, many believe that changes in circumstances will ultimately bring happiness and we fully place our hope in what we desire to happen. These types of expectations result in statements that life will be better “If only I could …” or “I’ll be glad when…”.
These statements demonstrate that our attitude and mood (countenance) has changed, we have delayed our peace and our hope is based upon circumstances. They also demonstrate that if what we have hoped for has not taken place or if it does not happen the way we desire it to happen, despair and disturbance of peace is occurring and we are beginning to cease to hope in God and beginning to cease to praise God. Whenever we cease to hope in God and cease to praise God, we will always experience anxiety, fear, despair, and a lack of peace. As the Psalmist wrote, hope in God. Place your expectations and trust in Him alone. Recognize your need to hope in God. Notice the psalmist uses the words, “for I shall again praise Him.” Recognize the need to repeatedly praise God. Begin to praise God continuously. Recognize and acknowledge who God is, for it is God who helps your countenance and He is your God!
Do you have feelings of disappointment and hopelessness? Do you recognize that this is not a good state to remain? Begin to think of where your help comes from and who you should hope in. Make the decision, like the psalmist, to encourage yourself in the Lord and begin to hope in and praise God today and your countenance will change, for He is your help and your hope.
"Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,