“Hope Did Not Die Here, But Here Was Given”

“Hope Did Not Die Here, But Here Was Given” April 7, 2022

A friend and I laughed recently about the fact that almost nothing in our lives has gone according to our pre-adult plans for our lives. Seriously almost nothing.  Along those lines, we talked about my latest random miscarriage at 50 years old, lucky 13, and how she was coping as the cruel calendar shouted that we’d passed the one-year mark of her adult son’s suicide.  We talked about both of our moving upheavals and craving for stability as we sought to obey the Lord’s will. And we talked of hope — hope in a plan and purpose for our lives, hope in everlasting life, and especially hope in Jesus Christ. We resolutely traverse our Gethsemanes because our Savior did. hope

Here is Hope woman facing a storm
Photo by Shashank Sahay on Unsplash

did not die here

Here Is Hope

He who healed our sorrows

Here was bruised and broken

He whose love no end knows

Here was forsaken, Left all alone.

Here despair cries boldly,

Claiming this its vict’ry.

Sweeter peace enfolds me:

Hope did not die here,

But here was given.

Here is Hope.

 

He who was rejected,

He knows well my longing

He, so long expected,

Carried our burdens,

Bore ev’ry sorrow:

Here is Hope!

 

Here is love unbounded

Here is all compassion

Here is mercy founded!

 

Hope did not die here,

But here was given;

And ours is the vict’ry.

Here is Hope.

(“Here Is Hope” by Rob Gardner)

 

After trudging through the quagmire of mortality and holding the iron rod, my friend and I knew our hope did not die here, but here was given.

Here is hope lighthouse standing against waves
Photo by Marcus Woodbridge on Unsplash

In the last week, I’ve talked to covenant women clinging to the Iron Rod as the storms of life rage around them. Many of them are clinging to hope alone.

I heard everything from visa and Green Card woes to fertility’s bitter challenges to defiant children’s opposition to the sting of bitter family contentions to the dilemma of family members struggling with mental, emotional, and physical illnesses to the harrowing impact of alcohol and porn addictions to a spouse walking out to the complications of tenderly caring for aging parents.

None of these temporal struggles shock me anymore per se, but surveying the ravaging attacks on people I love and admire brought me to my knees.

And [I] cried, saying: How long shall we suffer these great afflictions, O Lord? O Lord, give us strength according to our faith which is in Christ, even unto deliverance.

Lord, Give Us Strength … Even Unto Deliverance

When Alma cried this prayer, he and Amulek

…broke the cords with which they were bound . . . .  And Alma and Amulek came forth out of the prison, and they were not hurt; for the Lord had granted unto them power, according to their faith which was in Christ. And they straightway came forth out of the prison; and they were loosed from their bands; and the prison had fallen to the earth . . . .

Others, in different types of bondage,

did pour out their hearts to [the Lord their God]; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts.

And it came to pass that the voice of the Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage.

And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.

Their “prison walls” didn’t immediately fall down. But they found a surprising deliverance in their afflictions!

And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon [them] were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.

And it came to pass that so great was their faith and their patience that the voice of the Lord came unto them again, saying: Be of good comfort, for on the morrow I will deliver you out of bondage.

Covenants Empower Hope

Covenants provide one way that God can deliver us from mortal afflictions and bondage. We take on Jesus Christ’s name at baptism. We receive the Holy Ghost. In the temple, we are endowed.

To be endowed means to be given a gift—in this case the gift of priesthood power—that enables you to become more than you were before the gift was given.

The purpose of priesthood power is to help you access the grace of Jesus Christ’s atoning sacrifice and become more like Him. His priesthood power allows you to receive revelation, make decisions that lead you back to Him, and help you accomplish the work of salvation.

The Kirtland Temple’s dedicatory prayer gives insight into ways we can call upon the Lord to experience His powerful deliverance from telestial storms.

We ask thee, Holy Father, to establish the people that shall worship, and honorably hold a name and standing in this thy house, to all generations and for eternity;

That no weapon formed against them shall prosper; that he who diggeth a pit for them shall fall into the same himself;

That no combination of wickedness shall have power to rise up and prevail over thy people upon whom thy name shall be put in this house . . . thou wilt fight for thy people as thou didst in the day of battle, that they may be delivered from the hands of all their enemies.

Therefore we plead before thee for a full and complete deliverance from under this yoke;

Break it off, O Lord; break it off from the necks of thy servants, by thy power, that we may rise up in the midst of this generation and do thy work. . . .

And we ask thee, Holy Father, that thy servants may go forth from this house armed with thy power, and that thy name may be upon them, and thy glory be round about them, and thine angels have charge over them;

Hope Did Not Die Here in Mortality

Hand reaching towards the light
Photo by Dyu – Ha on Unsplash

In this mortal quagmire then, where every heartstring is broken and every soul refined, I turn to the Redeemer of sins, Healer of souls, the great Deliverer of every bondage and affliction. As I’ve taken His yoke upon me, He has lightened my burden and quenched my heart’s raging fires. Now endowed with power and armed with hope because of His victory, I face mortality’s afflictions with the knowledge that in this life

Hope did not die here,

But here was given;

And ours is the vict’ry.

Here is Hope.

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