Hope Well

My husband and I lived in Nashville, TN (USA) from August of 2017 to August of 2019, so we are well acquainted with the area. And, we have friends and family there, too.

Tuesday morning, just after midnight, I believe it was, a tornado ripped through Greater Nashville, TN. And, it did an enormous amount of damage to houses and buildings, and even to some church buildings, too, across a wide area. And, a number of deaths were reported, as well, sad to say.

My heart goes out to the people of Nashville at this time. My love and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

When I learned about the tornado, I got on the internet to check out the news, and it was just heartbreaking to see all the damage there. And, then a life-time friend of ours who lives there texted me to let me know that their church building was destroyed in the tornado.

And, so I looked that up on the internet, too, and I saw this video of a prayer meeting outside the damaged church building.

The Fallen Cross

What impressed me about this video was that their church steeple had fallen down to the ground, and the cross, which had been placed on top the steeple, was now resting near and seemingly pointing to a handicap spot in the parking lot. But, the cross was not damaged.

Immediately I sensed in my spirit that this was a message from God, so I prayerfully began to take notes on what I had seen, seeking the Lord for the message he has for me to get from this, and then possibly to share.

Then, I went back to the video, and on my camera on my phone I recorded a section of the video where they were panning down the steeple, away from the building, to the cross, which was seemingly pointing to this handicap spot in the parking lot.

Now, I was totally unaware that while I was doing this that my husband was playing some hymns in the background off of his phone, and the hymn that got recorded on my recording of the video was “All the Way My Savior Leads me” (full lyrics below). It couldn’t have been more perfect!

For, then I looked up the definition of “handicap,” and that led me to “a circumstance that makes progress or success difficult.”

Well, that certainly describes the situation in Nashville, TN, at this time, and the situation this church congregation is being faced with, too. And, then I read through the lyrics to this hymn, and what stood out to me were these words:

“Can I doubt His tender mercy,
Who through life has been my Guide?
…For I know, whate’er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well.”

I believe the Lord is in this, and that he has a purpose for it, and it is about his tender mercy, and it is about God working things out for good for those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. But, it isn’t just that. I believe there is a much deeper message here.

Psalm 63:1-4 ESV

“O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you;
my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you,
as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live;
in your name I will lift up my hands.”

I believe that God, in his providence, allows us to go through difficulties, trials, disasters, and tragedies, oftentimes to get our attention, and to draw us to seek him earnestly with our whole hearts, minds and souls. And, that is because there is a message he has for us, something he wants us to learn through our trials, if we will listen, and if we will heed his words to us.

And, this is the message I am seeing here:

The name of the church is “Hopewell.” If you break that down, it says “hope well.” “Hope” is what we have in God, in Jesus Christ, in his grace, and in his salvation from slavery to sin, which he provided for us in his death on a cross. And we, who genuinely believe in Jesus as Lord of our lives, have this hope in the promise of eternal life with God, too.

And, “well” means “sound, healthy.” So, this is a biblically sound (in doctrine) hope in God and in his promises.

So, “Hope Well Church” has been destroyed by a tornado, which is a storm. So, this would be like saying that the church which hopes well (was sound in doctrine regarding their hope) has been destroyed. But, not entirely. It is severely damaged, but there were parts of this building still standing, representing not a physical building, though, but a spiritual building comprised of living stones, with Jesus as the chief cornerstone.

And, the “storm,” I believe, is the cheap grace gospel which is permeating today’s church, particularly here in America, which is not sound in doctrine regarding our true hope in Christ, but is a man-made gospel created to appeal to human flesh and to coddle people in their sins, rather than to encourage them to turn away from their sins to follow our Lord in obedience.

To The Cross

Now, this is what stood out to me next. The camera panned down the steeple away from the destroyed “hope well church” to the cross of Christ and to this picture of that circumstance that makes progress or success difficult, represented by the handicap parking spot. And, then the song said, “All the way my Savior leads me…”

So, where was the camera leading us? Away from the destroyed “hope well church,” i.e. the church that hoped well in God, but that sound (in doctrine) hope had been destroyed. And, it led us to the cross of Christ, and to our troubled circumstances, and to the song which talks about our Savior leading us in the way he would have us to go.

So, I believe the message here, that our Lord wants to convey through this, is that he wants us to turn away from that destroyed hope, that damaged hope that was once well, but that is not well now. And, he wants to lead us to the cross of Christ as our hope, and as our answer for what troubles us.

And, he is leading us back to a hope that is well, i.e. that is sound in doctrine, because it is based in the teachings in scripture, and not in the teachings of men who are promising a false hope based on a lie.

What is it?

So, what is this hope that is “well,” i.e. that is sound in doctrine, which our Lord is leading us to?

First of all, it is that we need to earnestly seek after and thirst after the Lord and his holiness and righteousness. Then, we need to turn away from what is destroyed, what is ruined, what is not whole and healthy spiritually, but what is ruining our lives spiritually.

We need to move away from all of that destruction, and we need to come to the cross. And, Jesus explained what that means when he said that if any of us would come after him, we must deny self and take up our cross daily (die daily to sin and self) and follow (obey) him. For, if we hold on to our former (destroyed) lives, we will lose them for eternity. But, if we lose our old destroyed lives for his sake, we will gain eternal life (Lu. 9:23-26).

The Handicap

And, lastly I see one more thing, which I believe is a message for the whole church, but which may be a message the Lord wants to give to this specific congregation, too. And, that is that as the camera panned down this steeple away from the destroyed physical building, it took us to the cross of Christ and pointed to our broken condition, too, i.e. to our handicap.

And, I believe that handicap that is hindering the church’s spiritual progress is this building, but not speaking necessarily of the physical building itself, but that the church is not a building built by human hands. It is not a denomination or a corporation under the government or a business or a social organization. It is not anything man-made, in other words.

So, the Lord, I believe, is taking this opportunity to say to his church here to move away from this idea that the church is a building or a denomination, etc., and to move away from man-made religion and man-made structures within the church, and away from man-made gospels which do not honor Christ as Lord, and which do not call for repentance and obedience to Christ.

And, he is calling everyone to come to the cross, and to die with him to sin that they might live with him to his righteousness and for eternity with God.

He wants us not dependent on men and their man-made structures, but he wants us totally dependent on him in all things and for all things. So, the encouragement here, I believe, is to move away from what is of man, and to come to the cross, and to seek after, and to thirst after God, instead.

All The Way My Savior Leads Me

Lyrics by Frances J Crosby, pub. 1875
Music by Robert Lowry, pub. 1875

All the way my Savior leads me,
What have I to ask beside?
Can I doubt His tender mercy,
Who through life has been my Guide?
Heav’nly peace, divinest comfort,
Here by faith in Him to dwell!
For I know, whate’er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well.

All the way my Savior leads me,
Cheers each winding path I tread,
Gives me grace for every trial,
Feeds me with the living Bread.
Though my weary steps may falter
And my soul athirst may be,
Gushing from the Rock before me,
Lo! A spring of joy I see.

All the way my Savior leads me,
Oh, the fullness of His love!
Perfect rest to me is promised
In my Father’s house above.
When my spirit, clothed immortal,
Wings its flight to realms of day
This my song through endless ages:
Jesus led me all the way.

*Caution: This link may contain ads

6 thoughts on “Hope Well

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s